Speech by US President Joe Biden said threat from North Korea would be treated with diplomacy and deterrence

Recent comments by US President Joe Biden and members of his administration show he intends to maintain a hostile policy towards North Korea that will require a corresponding response from Pyongyang, northern officials said on Sunday. -koreans.

The officials’ comments came in a series of statements released by the state-run KCNA news agency, after the White House said on Friday that US officials had completed a months-long review of North Korean policy.

In a statement, a foreign ministry spokesperson accused Washington of insulting the dignity of the country’s top leadership by criticizing the human rights situation in North Korea.

The criticism of human rights is a provocation that shows the United States “is preparing for a full confrontation” with North Korea, and will receive a response accordingly, the anonymous spokesperson said.

In a separate statement, Kwon Jong Gun, director general of the Department of US Affairs at the Department of Foreign Affairs, cited Mr. Biden’s first political speech to Congress on Wednesday, where the new president said nuclear programs in Korea North and Iran were threats. be treated with “severe diplomacy and deterrence”.

Mr Kwon said it was illogical and infringing on North Korea’s right to self-defense for the United States to characterize its defensive deterrence as a threat.

Mr. Biden’s speech was “intolerable” and “a big blunder,” Kwon said. “His statement clearly reflects his intention to continue to apply the hostile policy towards the DPRK as it had done by the United States for more than half a century,” he said, using the initials of the official name of North Korea.

‘Negative responses’

The North Korean statements appear to echo the ministry’s comments in March saying that relations with the United States would be shaped by the “principle of power for power and goodwill for goodwill,” Jenny Town said, director of the US 38 North program, which tracks North Korea.

“So for the United States to continue to focus on the threat, it will continue to focus on the negative aspects of the relationship and will elicit negative responses,” she said.

Ms Town noted that while a statement hinted at the policy review, the North Korean comment seemed more focused on the Biden administration’s discussions of threats.

Talks to persuade Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear weapons program have been stalled since a series of summits between Mr. Biden’s predecessor, President Donald Trump, and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un failed. reached an agreement.

As part of the policy review announced on Friday, Biden has opted for a new approach to pressure North Korea which will explore the use of diplomacy to break the deadlock but will not seek a large market. with Mr. Kim, the White House said.

The White House and the State Department did not immediately comment on the latest North Korean statements.

In Sunday’s statement, Kwon said the US talks on diplomacy were aimed at covering up its hostile acts and that its deterrence was only a means of posing nuclear threats to North Korea.

Now that Mr. Biden’s policy has become clear, North Korea “will be forced to push for corresponding measures, and in time the United States will find itself in a very serious situation,” he said. concluded.

In a third statement, Kim Yo Jong, a senior government official and sister of leader Kim Jong Un, sharply criticized South Korea for failing to prevent defector activists from launching anti-North Korea pamphlets.

A group of activists in South Korea said on Friday it had launched balloons in North Korea carrying dollar bills and leaflets denouncing the Pyongyang government, defying a recently imposed law banning such releases after complaints from the North .

“We regard the maneuvers committed by human waste in the south as a serious provocation against our state and we will examine the corresponding measures,” Kim Yo Jong said.

Last year, North Korea blew up an inter-Korean liaison office in Kaesong, North Korea, after Kim Yo Jong led a campaign to criticize the leaflet’s launch.