Published: Tue, September 10, 2019
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

North Korea offers to resume talks with the United States in late September

North Korea offers to resume talks with the United States in late September

The issue is especially relevant as South Korea announced last month its decision to terminate the military information-sharing pact with Japan, after Tokyo expanded export restrictions on Seoul, citing security concerns, in apparent retaliation against the South Korean top court's ruling on wartime forced labor.

North Korea offered Monday to restart stalled nuclear negotiations with the US later this month but warned "dealings may come to an end" if the Americans don't bring something new to the table. North Korea is widely believed to want the United States to provide it with security guarantees and extensive relief from US -led sanctions in return for limited denuclearization steps.

"All of these acts by North Korea that escalate tensions do not help efforts to ease tension on the Korean peninsula, and we reiterate our calls for an immediate halt", South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement.

"Given that the projectiles were fired from a western region, North Korea appears to have test-fired weapons it already tested previously", Kim Dong-yup, a professor at Kyungnam University's Far East Institute, said.

"Trump has given them a pass on short-range missiles", he said. "More detailed analysis is needed to determine the exact specifications", JCS spokesman Kim Joon-rak said.

Tuesday's launches were the eighth such launches since late July and the first since August 24.

A senior Trump administration official said later: "We are aware of reports of projectiles launched from North Korea".

Numerous latest missiles launched by North Korea appear to be new types created to evade interception by U.S., South Korean and Japanese missile defence systems.

"Going by what they've said so far, they're not too concerned about effects on talks with the US", said Joshua Pollack, a North Korea expert at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in California.

The latest launch immediately after such a remark may be an attempt by the North to put pressure on the USA and see how it reacts.

The tests, which have been repeatedly dismissed by President Donald Trump as routine, are just the latest bit of proof that North Korea, a small, fiercely proud, totalitarian nation surrounded by big neighboring powers that are often unfriendly, is a master at getting a lot from a little.

A Japanese defence ministry formal claimed on Tuesday there was no confirmation of any ballistic missile moving into Japan's territory or exclusive economic zone and that there was no fast risk to nationwide protection.

North Korea on Monday marked the 71st anniversary of its founding with many foreigners visiting the capital Pyongyang as well as national flags and eye-catching signs along main roads bringing a festive mood. "We consider this a serious problem and will continue to monitor the development, while ensuring the functioning of warning and surveillance activity".

The launches came after North Korea said a day earlier that it was willing to restart nuclear talks with the United States in late September.

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"I believe that the USA side will come out with a proposal geared to the interests of the DPRK and the USA and based on the calculation method acceptable to us", Choe said. DPRK stands for the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the North's official name. It followed a series of missile launches earlier that year, as well as a nuclear test.

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