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June 12, 2021
On May 2nd, North Korea warned that the U.S. will face “a very grave situation” as President Joe Biden “made a big blunder” in his recent speech by calling the North a security threat and revealing his intent to maintain a hostile policy against them.
In his first address to a joint session of Congress, President Biden flagged the nuclear program in Iran and North Korea as “serious threats to American security.” Senior North Korean Foreign Ministry official Kwon Jong Gunstated issued a response to President Biden signaling that the North assessed President Joe Biden’s remarks in a recent speech to Congress as “hostile policy” and warned of “corresponding measures.”
Kwon claimed, “His statement reflects his intent to keep enforcing the hostile policy toward the DPRK as it had been done by the U.S. for over half a century.” DPRK stands for the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the official name of the communist nation.
Kwon continued, “Now that the keynote of the U.S. new DPRK policy has become clear, we will be compelled to press for corresponding measures, and with time the U.S. will find itself in a very grave situation.”
The direct criticism of the U.S. commander in chief is a sharp departure from the state of play under former President Donal Trump’s administration, who fostered an unprecedented relationship with the leader of North Korea, Kim Jong Un. The relationship showed promise, especially after the two leaders signed a mutual understanding agreement in which Kim committed to denuclearization and working towards peace with South Korea. However, in January, Kim threatened to enlarge his nuclear arsenal and build more high-tech weapons targeting the U.S. mainland, saying the fate of bilateral ties would depend on whether it abandons its hostile policy.
In March, he conducted short-range ballistic missile tests for the first time in a year, though he still maintains a moratorium on bigger weapons launches. Leif-Eric Easley, a professor at Ewha University in Seoul, said, “If Pyongyang agrees to working-level talks, the starting point of negotiations would be a freeze of North Korean testing and development of nuclear capabilities and delivery systems.” The Biden administration completed a review of its policy toward North Korea. The statement indicated that Biden’s approach will seek a middle ground between Trump’s “grand bargain” and Barack Obama’s “strategic patience” approaches.
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ARTICLE: GABRIELLA ANTOS
POLITICS EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: THE GUARDIAN