Published: Fri, August 09, 2019
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

United States hopes for North Korea nuclear talks despite missile tests

United States hopes for North Korea nuclear talks despite missile tests

"So when President Trump asks for a burden-sharing increase of several $billion, we must first recognize that the National Assembly is already increasing the MND budget as rapidly as it likely can", Bennett added.

The still hoping to hold another round of nuclear talks with North Korea despite the country's recent missile tests, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Wednesday.

Trump tweeted this morning that previous year "South Korea paid $990,000,000". But it said that USA and South Korean officials during Trump national security adviser John Bolton's visit to Seoul last month agreed that the upcoming negotiations should proceed in a "rational and fair direction".

South Korean and the United States officials signed an agreement in February under which Seoul would increase its contribution to just under 1.04 trillion won ($927 million), an increase of about $70.3 million.

South Korea began paying the United States for the "indirect costs" of the U.S. Army stationed on its land in 1991, according to the the Los Angeles Times. -South Korean military exercises violate Pyongyang agreements with both countries.

Trump also said that talks on defense costs were underway - a statement Seoul politely refuted, via a discreet Foreign Ministry statement that was texted to foreign reporters.

Bruce Bennett, Senior Defense Analyst with The RAND Corporation, told The Epoch Times in an email August 7 that South Korea has existing plans for increased contributions to the military alliance. He is, however, highly likely to visit United States troops engaged in low-key, joint summer drills with their South Korean allies.

Trump's rhetoric also puts South Korean President Moon Jae-in in a tough spot, Oba said. "But they don't pay for the costs of our own military equipment or personnel", Sathasivam said in an email.

His focus on finance has also generated friction in Asia.

South Korea's presidential Blue House did not immediately respond to request for comment on the talks.

Relations between the two USA allies worsened late a year ago as part of a decades-old dispute over compensation for forced laborers during Japan's occupation.

Seoul only has one military alliance - with Washington - but is surrounded by more powerful neighbors.

Tuesday's missile launch, the North's fourth in less than two weeks, came amid stalled denuclearisation talks with Washington and US-South Korea military exercises, although Washington and Seoul played down the tests.

Trump's financial demands have triggered worries in South Korea he might withdraw some of the 28,500 troops.

"We don't usually announce individual cases of export permits but I'm making this public exceptionally because South Korea's government has made the unfair criticism that our move is something like an export embargo", he told reporters.

Weapons experts have said all of the tests in the past two weeks were of the same solid-fuel, ballistic missile known as the KN-23, which is capable of carrying a nuclear warhead and has a range to strike all of South Korea and perhaps parts of Japan.

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