S.Korea's presidential office vows to keep denuclearization talks on track

Lim Chang-won Reporter Posted : 2019-03-15 16:05 Updated : 2019-03-15 16:05
글씨작게 글씨크게

[Yonhap Photo]

SEOUL -- South Korea's presidential office called for efforts to keep denuclearization talks on track "under any circumstances" after a senior North Korean diplomat reportedly warned that the regime is rethinking whether to continue dialogue with the United States and maintain a moratorium on missile tests.

"Under any circumstances, our government will make efforts to resume negotiations between North Korea and the United States," Yoon Do-han, a presidential aide in charge of public relations, said Friday in a statement, responding to remarks by North Korean Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui in Pyongyang.

Speaking at an urgent meeting with diplomats and foreign media in Pyongyang, Choe cited the U.S. attitude at a summit in Vietnam in February. "We have no intention to yield to the U.S. demands in any form, nor are we willing to engage in negotiations of this kind," she was quoted as saying by Russia's TASS news agency.

According to news reports from Pyongyang, Choe said North Korean leader Kim Jong-un would soon decide whether to stay on the dialogue track and refrain from carrying out missile launches and nuclear tests.

"Personal relations between the two supreme leaders are still good and the chemistry is mysteriously wonderful," Choe said, urging the Trump administration to change tack and stressed Pyongyang has no intention of budging.

The North's sudden warning comes as President Moon Jae-in is on a state visit to Cambodia as part of his three-nation tour that earlier took him to Brunei and Malaysia.