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Saturday, August 31, 2019, 15:04
DPRK berates Pompeo, says hopes for talks fading
By Associated Press
Saturday, August 31, 2019, 15:04 By Associated Press

In this June 11, 2018, file photo, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s Vice-Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui, center, arrives for a meeting with US Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim (not in frame) at the Ritz-Carlton Millenia Hotel in Singapore ahead of a summit between US President Donald Trump and DPRK leader Kim Jong-un. Choe, on Aug 31, 2019, berated US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo over his comments describing DPRK behavior as "rogue". (YONG TECK LIM / AP)

SEOUL — A senior diplomat of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) on Saturday berated US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo over his comments describing DPRK behavior as "rogue" and said Pyongyang's hopes for talks with Washington are fading.

In a statement carried by state media, DPRK First Vice-Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui said Pompeo's "thoughtless" comments increased DPRK people's animosity toward Americans and made it harder for working-level nuclear negotiations between the countries to resume.

DPRK First Vice-Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui said Pompeo's "thoughtless" comments increased DPRK people's animosity toward Americans and made it harder for working-level nuclear negotiations between the countries to resume

"Our expectations of dialogue with the US are gradually disappearing and we are being pushed to reexamine all the measures we have taken so far," Choe said.

"We are very curious about the background of the American top diplomat's thoughtless remarks and we will watch what calculations he has. The US had better not put any longer our patience to the test with such remarks irritating us if it doesn't want to have bitter regrets afterward."

ALSO READ: US says ready to engage in working-level talks with DPRK

Pompeo, in a speech to US veterans in Indiana on Tuesday, said the Trump administration recognized that "North Korea's rogue behavior could not be ignored" while touting its approach in foreign policy.

The DPRK is also referred to as North Korea.

Nuclear negotiations have been at a standstill since a February summit between US President Donald Trump and DPRK leader Kim Jong-un in Vietnam collapsed after the US side rejected DPRK's demands for broad sanctions relief in exchange for a partial surrender of its nuclear capabilities.

ALSO READ: Trump says he received letter from DPRK's Kim

The DPRK, since the breakdown in Hanoi, has repeatedly demanded that Washington remove Pompeo from the nuclear negotiations, accusing him of maintaining a hard-line stance on sanctions and distorting Pyongyang's statements, while avoiding direct criticism of Trump.

Trump and Kim met again at the inter-Korean border in June and agreed to resume working-level talks, but there has been no known meeting between the countries since then. 

The DPRK in recent weeks had conducted a slew of short-range ballistic missile tests in what's seen as an attempt to increase pressure on Washington and Seoul over the slow nuclear diplomacy.

ALSO READ: DPRK's Kim guides test-firing of new multiple rocket launcher


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