The U.S. continues to be “hell-bent” on hostility towards North Korea despite recent high-level dialogue between Pyongyang and Washington, the country’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations said in a statement on Wednesday.
The press statement comes in response to a recent letter sent by the U.S. and its allies to the UN Security Council’s 1718, alleging the DPRK had breached oil imports caps mandated by international sanctions and calling for an end to all exports of petroleum to the country.
That letter also reportedly urged member states to honor their commitments under UNSC resolution 2397 and ensure that North Korean laborers working in their territory are sent home by December 22.
“The joint letter is no less than an overt pressure upon the UN Member States, urging them to implement the “Sanctions Resolutions” against the DPRK,” Wednesday’s letter from the DPRK’s UN mission read.
“It speaks to the reality that the United States is practically more and more hell-bent on the hostile acts against the DPRK, though talking about the DPRK-U.S. dialogue,” it continued.
Stating incorrectly that the letter was sent on June 29 — Reuters reports it was actually sent two days earlier — the DPRK mission claimed the note was circulated “on the very same day” that U.S. President Donald Trump had proposed a summit meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
“It is quite ridiculous for the United States to continue to behave obsessed with sanctions and pressure campaign against the DPRK, considering sanctions as a panacea for all problems,” the statement said.
Reiterating North Korea’s longstanding position that “we do not thirst for sanctions,” it also calls on UN member states to “keep vigilance against deliberate attempts by the United States to undermine the peaceful atmosphere that has been created on the Korean peninsula.”
The timing of Wednesday’s statement is notable, coming just days after the U.S. and North Korean leaders met for an impromptu third summit at Panmunjom on the inter-Korean border.
President Trump on Monday evening praised those talks with Kim Jong Un, saying he looked forward to “seeing him again soon.”
Sunday’s meeting saw the two countries agree to restart working-level negotiations, widely expected to take place later in the month and be led by U.S. Special Representative Stephen Biegun and North Korean first vice foreign minister Choe Son Hui.
One expert said Wednesday’s statement was noteworthy for having directly named the U.S. State Department, while stressing it “has not been reported by North Korean media, internal or external, meaning they want to make their point in a low-key manner.”
“It almost sounds like they are warning the State Department, which is leading the U.S.-DPRK talks from the U.S. side, not to damage the atmosphere of dialogue,” Minyoung Lee, a senior analyst with NK News‘s sister service NK Pro, said.
Featured image: Donald Trump’s twitter
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