December 10, 2020 10:41 AM | With information from EFE
15 minutes. The US Deputy Secretary of State, Stephen Biegun, today defended diplomacy as the “best” and “only way” to solve the challenges with North Korea and encouraged Pyongyang to resume dialogue with Washington.
“Looking to the future, I remain convinced that diplomacy remains the best way, indeed the only way, to solve our challenges with North Korea,” the US representative said in a speech given in Seoul.
“Pyongyang faces decisive events in the near future, especially the eighth party congress in January. We strongly encourage North Korea to use the time remaining until that appointment to resume the path of diplomacy.“, he added, in statements collected by the agency Yonhap.
Expectation before a change of government
The regime announced for the end of January the celebration of the eighth congress of the Workers’ Party. The call is believed to have been made to coincide with the arrival of US President-elect Joe Biden to the White House.
Biden has not yet clarified what his strategy will be to deal with the situation with the North Korean regime. Pyongyang has not even ruled on the victory of the Democrat in the November elections.
In any case, the US president-elect spoke of holding a summit with Kim under certain preconditions. This stance might not initially please Pyongyang.
In this sense, Biegun, who is making what is probably his last visit to South Korea before the change of government in Washington, expressed his desire that the North and the United States enter into talks. He assured that these approaches “require persistent commitment and difficult concessions but that they bring enormous rewards.”
The deputy secretary of state also regretted that the dialogue has stalled since the Hanoi summit in 2019. Washington considered insufficient the nuclear assets that Pyongyang offered to dismantle in exchange for lifting sanctions. Furthermore, Biegun accused the regime of “wasting” opportunities.
“Unfortunately, many opportunities have been squandered in the last two years by our North Korean counterpart., that in too many occasions has been dedicated to look for obstacles for the negotiations instead of taking advantage of the opportunities to look for compromises “, affirmed.