The North Korean foreign ministry’s Institute for Disarmament and Peace condemned a recent U.S. government description of the DPRK as a “rogue state” in a statement made Wednesday evening, warning of “countermeasures” against what it claimed is an increasingly hostile stance from Washington.
In comments carried by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), the President of the Institute for Disarmament and Peace was reported to have responded to a question by a reporter about the U.S. Department of Defense’s (D0D) recent “2019 India-Pacific Strategy Report.”
That report, released on June 1, described the DPRK as a “rogue state,” and warned that the country remains a “security challenge” to the United States and its allies as long as it retains its nuclear arsenal.
It also highlighted concerns about North Korea’s continued violations of human rights, as well as the danger posed by its “history as a serial proliferator.”
“That the U.S. has called the DPRK, its dialogue partner, a ‘rogue state’ is a clear infringement upon the latter’s sovereignty and dignity, and it is nothing less than a de facto declaration of confrontation,” the Institute for Disarmament and Peace President, who is not named in the statement, said in response on Wednesday.
“The United States has thus explicitly revealed once again in the face of the world its aggressive attempt to bring us to our knees by force,” they continued, adding that the report violated “the spirit of the June 12 DPRK-U.S. Joint Statement where the U.S. has committed to terminate the hostile bilateral relations and establish new one.”
The comments revealed that Washington is becoming “ever more frenzied” in its policy of unilateral disarmament and regime change, the President continued.
“It is a stark reality seen by the past history that the U.S. talked about dialogue in front, but behind the screen it ran amuck to prepare for an aggressive war against its dialogue partner.”
Pyongyang is closely “following with high vigilance the recent maneuvers of the U.S. to increase military pressure on us,” they said, warning that “the more the U.S. hostile acts towards the DPRK grow, the stronger our countermeasures will become.”
Wednesday evening’s remarks came just 24 hours after another statement by North Korea’s foreign ministry calling for the U.S. to take action in stalled denuclearization talks, saying Washington should consider the “correct strategic choice before it is too late.”
It also follows a statement by another foreign ministry-affiliated think tank last week, in which the Policy Research Director of the Institute for American Studies (IAS) slammed a recently-announced February 13 subcritical nuclear test by the U.S. as proof of Washington’s bad faith intentions.
The slew of statements also come amid a months-long impasse in dialogue between the United States and North Korea as the one-year anniversary of the two countries’ first summit in Singapore looms.
One expert stressed the statement’s format as suggesting that Pyongyang was seeking to send a message to the U.S. while avoiding publicizing the message domestically.
“This is a low-level foreign ministry pronouncement, attributed to one of the ministry’s institutes. Furthermore, it was also not carried by domestic media,” said Minyoung Lee, an analyst with NK News‘s sister site NK Pro.
“These two elements enable the DPRK leadership to comment on the topic while distancing itself from the message and reducing its commitment to the issue,” she added.
“That said, the last sentence of the pronouncement, which mentions “countermeasures” — a formulation North Korean official pronouncements have rarely used since 2018 — is worth noting.”
Edited by James Fretwell
Featured image: KCNA