US will face 'undesired consequences', says North Korea
SEOUL North Korea's Vice Foreign Minister said on Tuesday that the US will face "undesired consequences" if it fails to present a new position in denuclearisation talks by the end of the year, state media reported.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has set a year-end deadline for the US to show more flexibility after his second summit with US President Donald Trump failed to produce a deal to end Pyongyang's nuclear program in return for sanctions relief. But Mr Trump and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have brushed aside the deadline, calling for Mr Kim to take action on his pledge to denuclearise after years of pursuing nuclear and rocket programs in defiance of UN Security Council resolutions.
Ms Choe Son Hui singled out Mr Pompeo's interview last week with CBS in which he said the US may have to "change paths" if the negotiations break down.
"Changing paths is not a privilege that only the United States has, but it could be our own choice if we make up our mind", Ms Choe said, according to the official KCNA news agency.
"If the United States fails to reestablish its position within the timeline we gave, it will see truly undesired consequences."
She also said North Korea's determination to denuclearise remained unchanged. It would happen "when the time comes," but only if the US changed its current calculations.
The North had been seeking a deal to ease sanctions in exchange for dismantling some of its nuclear facilities, but Mr Trump called for a "big deal" in which sanctions would be lifted if Pyongyang handed over all its nuclear weapons to the US.
Ms Choe's remarks continue North Korea's attack on Mr Trump's point person on the nuclear negotiations, after another foreign ministry official rejected Mr Pompeo as a counterpart, demanding a switch to someone "more careful and mature."
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