North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho said the United States' actions against the country, since the June 12 Singapore summit, has been “alarming.”
Minister Ri said the economic sanctions, as well as the lack of a Korean War peace treaty, are major issues that could derail nuclear talks between the two countries.
The official said the latest North Korean statements were a “negotiating tactic to put pressure” on U.S. President Donald Trump's administration ahead of the upcoming midterm elections, adding that the North hope more favorable denuclearization terms can be ironed out.
On Monday, South Korea's Presidential Spokesperson Kim Eui-keum said Seoul is “asking North Korea to speed up its denuclearization” and the United States to “show sincere efforts about corresponding measures that North Korea is demanding.”
Recently disclosed findings of a United Nations report accuses North Korea of continuing to develop nuclear and missile programs in violation of international sanctions. The 149-page report claimed that North Korea was defying sanctions through diplomats and others based overseas and continued to sell conventional weapons to fuel violence.
“North Korea has not stopped its nuclear and missile programs and continued to defy Security Council resolutions through a massive increase in illicit ship-to-ship transfers of petroleum products, as well as through transfers of coal at sea during 2018.”
Though North Korea has said there is “strong possibility” of a second summit between the country's leader Kim and Trump, harsh words were issued about United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visit.
“The US is fatally mistaken if it went to the extent of regarding that the (Democratic People's Republic of Korea) would be compelled to accept, out of its patience, the demands reflecting its gangster-like mindset,” a statement from state-run news agency KCNA read.
Meanwhile, Washington has retorted that the sanctions will only be lifted when Pyongyang can categorically prove the country has achieved complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization.