US upbeat about NK denuclearization despite new weapon test

By Yonhap
  • Published : Nov 17, 2018 - 12:53
  • Updated : Nov 17, 2018 - 20:44

The United States expressed confidence Friday that North Korea will honor its commitment to denuclearize despite its test of an unspecified high-tech weapon.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un inspected the “successful” test of a “high-tech tactical weapon” at a national defense institute, state media reported earlier in the day.

It marked the first such inspection by the leader following his viewing of an intercontinental ballistic missile launch in November 2017.

“At the Singapore Summit, President Trump and Chairman Kim made a number of commitments regarding final, fully verified denuclearization and creating a brighter future for North Korea,” a State Department spokesperson said in response to a Yonhap query.

“We are talking with the North Koreans about implementing all of those commitments.”

The summit in June yielded a commitment by Kim to work toward “complete” denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula in exchange for security guarantees from the US.

Follow-up negotiations have stalled as the North has demanded sanctions relief and the US has refused to offer major concessions before the North‘s full and verified denuclearization.

“The President has made clear that if Kim Jong-un denuclearizes, there is a bright future for North Korea,” the spokesperson added. “We remain confident that the promises made by President Trump and Chairman Kim will be fulfilled.”

Trump has said he expects to have a second meeting with Kim early next year.

Meanwhile, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington-based think tank, revealed earlier this week that it had identified 13 of 20 North Korean missile operating bases that remained undeclared. (Yonhap)