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North Korea wants security guarantees before nuclear talks with U.S.

North Korea wants to make talks on its nuclear programme conditional on security guarantees from the U.S., the country’s Foreign Ministry on Monday said.

North Korea
US President Donald Trump and North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un stand on North Korean soil while walking to South Korea in the Demilitarized Zone(DMZ) on June 30, 2019, in Panmunjom, Korea. (Photo by Brendan Smialowski / AFP)

Days after Pyongyang said it was ready for new talks with the U.S., a statement from the Foreign Ministry said the forthcoming negotiations would be “decisive” for the future path of Washington’s dialogue with North Korea.

The release from state media outlet KCNA cited the head of North Korea’s department of U.S. affairs but did not name the official.

“The discussion of denuclearisation may be possible when threats and hurdles endangering our system security and obstructing our development are clearly removed beyond all doubt,” the statement read.

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New negotiations with the U.S. could happen “in a few weeks,” according to the statement.

North Korea’s deputy foreign minister Choe Son Hui said previously the talks were likely to happen in late September.

In South Korea, demands for security guarantees from Pyongyang’s leadership are seen as an attempt to strengthen its negotiating position.

Pyongyang is also pushing for sanctions against it to be relaxed.

U.S. President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un have met three times for talks, but have failed to make any concrete agreements on North’s denuclearisation

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