Bhopal, June 24, 2016 (Ataullah Faizan): North Korea has “no thoughts” of resuming six-party talks on its nuclear programme, a top Pyongyang official said on Thursday in BEIJING, despite the repeated urgings of its closest ally China. The North quit the now-stalled negotiations aimed at curbing its nuclear weapons programme in 2009, and soon afterwards carried out its second atomic test. The talks are hosted by China, and include South Korea, the United States, Russia, and Japan. Beijing, the North’s main diplomatic protector and economic benefactor, wants to revive negotiations, although Washington, Seoul and Tokyo all insist Pyongyang — which carried out two missile launches earlier this week — must first take some tangible step towards denuclearisation. Choe Son-Hui, deputy director-general of the North American affairs bureau in North Korea’s foreign ministry, said in Beijing.
“For now, we have no thoughts about taking part in talks for discussing North Korea’s denuclearisation.” She was in the Chinese capital for an annual security forum, which includes representatives from each of the six parties. “Under these circumstances where the US hostile policy is still there, DPRK is not in a position to talk about denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula,” she told reporters in English outside the country’s embassy, using its official name. Ties between China and the North have become strained in recent years as Pyongyang has pressed ahead with internationally-condemned nuclear tests, and with Kim Jong-Un yet to visit Beijing three years after inheriting power.
After a string of failures in recent months, North Korea successfully tested two powerful new Musudan medium-range missiles on Wednesday, one of which flew 400 kilometres into the Sea of Japan (East Sea). Existing United Nations measures prohibit North Korea from using ballistic missile technology. After Pyongyang conducted a fourth nuclear test on January 6, followed by a long-range rocket launch on February 7, the UN Security Council adopted its most punishing sanctions yet against North Korea.