Kim says North Korea could take 'new path' if U.S. maintains sanctions

Kim says North Korea could take 'new path' if U.S. maintains sanctions

According to Sky News, Kim said: "Now that North and South Korea chose to take the path of peace and prosperity, we insist that joint military exercises with outside forces should no longer be allowed and deployment of war equipment such as outside strategic assets should be completely stopped". He added that he is willing to meet U.S. President Donald Trump at any time to produce results that the global community would welcome.

"If the U.S. does not keep its promise made in front of the whole world. and insists on sanctions and pressures on our republic", Kim said on Tuesday, "we may be left with no choice but to consider a new way to safeguard our sovereignty and interests".

Kim made the comments on Tuesday during his annual New Year's Day address laying out Pyongyang's top priorities for the 12 months ahead. He also made a nationalistic call urging for stronger inter-Korean cooperation and said the North is ready to resume operations at a jointly run factory park in the North Korean border town of Kaesong and restart South Korean tours to the North's Diamond Mountain resort.

Kim has warned Washington not to test North Koreans' patience with sanctions and pressure.

Pyongyang has demanded Washington lift sanctions and declare an official end to the 1950-53 Korean War in response to its initial, unilateral steps toward denuclearisation, including dismantling its only known nuclear testing site and a key missile engine facility.

"Now that North and South Korea decided on the path of peace and prosperity, we insist that joint military exercises with outside forces should no longer be allowed and deployment of war weapons such as outside strategic assets should be completely stopped", Kim said.

He also said he was ready to meet Mr Trump again at any time.

Nuclear talks between Washington and Pyongyang have stalled since then, and Mr Kim's New Year address has cast further doubt on whether he is willing to give up the weapons after all.




"We will never tolerate outside interferences and interventions meant to block our way toward reconciliation, unity and the unification of our people, while trying to make our relations scummy to their states and interests", the North Korean leader said, adding that "significant" agreements achieved during 2018's three inter-Korean summits could be "regarded as non-aggression treaty".

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un delivers a speech in North Korea.

Kim's speech comes after year of unprecedented summitry, including the historic summit with Trump and three meetings with Moon and two with Chinese President Xi Jinping, and provided a rare glimpse into the general direction of the reclusive country's policy in the months to come.

TV screens show US President Donald Trump, right, meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore. Taking matters into their own hands, Kim and his South Korean counterpart Moon Jae-in held a symbolic ceremony to link their railway and road networks late December.

He said North Korea had shown it was willing to take steps towards denuclearisation, but the USA needed to offer more compromise.

There was no immediate reaction from the US State Department, but South Korea's presidential office welcomed Kim's speech, saying it carried his "firm will" to advance relations with Seoul and Washington.

Although the North did not conduct nuclear or missile tests past year, satellite images and leaked information from intelligence officials have pointed to ongoing activity at facilities in the secretive country.

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