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North Korean official warn US against ‘confidence-destroying measures’

A North Korean official tells a security forum in Beijing that US sanctions are “confidence-destroying” and hinder the denuclearization process on the Korean Peninsula.

Song Il Hyok, deputy director general of the North Korean foreign ministry’s Institute for Disarmament and Peace, called on Washington Thursday to “lift immediately the sanctions and this hindrance” to confidence-building.

“We think that sanctions and pressure do more harm than good,” media outlets quoted Song as saying.

Also at the forum was North Korean Colonel General Kim Hyong Ryong, who said his country was following through on declarations reached with South Korea and the US.

“It is our firm and unshakable position” to implement the joint statement with the US which will transform “the Korean Peninsula, once a hot spot in the world, into a peaceful and prosperous region”, Kim said.

The officials spoke at the Xiangshan Forum, a regional defense dialogue hosted by China since 2006 as part of Beijing’s efforts to step up its global influence.

In June, US President Donald Trump met North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in a landmark summit in Singapore, during which they agreed to work toward denuclearization of the peninsula.

The North has already taken several steps toward that goal, but the US has taken none.