Published: Mon, December 17, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Korea warns U.S. sanctions may 'block path to denuclearisation'

Korea warns U.S. sanctions may 'block path to denuclearisation'

As snow fell Sunday, tens of thousands of people offered flowers and paid respects to the late leader at Mansu Hill in central Pyongyang, the location of huge bronze statues of the "Dear Leader" and national founder Kim Il Sung. Kim Jong-il is believed to have died due to medical conditions exacerbated by a heart attack in 2011.

A second summit between Trump and Kim - who exchanged personal insults and threats of war throughout 2017 - is expected to be held next year, with the United States leader facing criticism over the planned talks since North Korea has taken few concrete steps to abandon its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes.

The North's stinging response came after the United States said on Monday it had introduced sanctions on three North Korean officials, including a top aide to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, for alleged human rights abuses.

Mr. Jong is minister of state security, Mr. Choe heads the Organization and Guidance Department and Mr. Pak is director of the Propaganda and Agitation Department.

The two sides have yet to reschedule working-level talks between U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and senior North Korean official Kim Yong Chol, which were canceled abruptly in November. Trump has suggested he could meet Kim again early next year.

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North Korea has broadcasted warning messages at the NLL, and has not shut the blast doors that protect the regime's artillery, Shin said, adding the North could be using tensions at the border for "future negotiations".

The president also said: "We are doing just fine!"

Mr Trump is facing criticism over the planned talks since North Korea has taken few concrete steps to abandon its nuclear and ballistic missile programme.

In a statement carried by the official KCNA news agency, the North said Trump had repeatedly expressed his desire to improve relations with Pyongyang, but the US State Department was "bent on bringing the DPRK-US relations back to the status of past year which was marked by exchanges of fire". The meeting has yet to be rescheduled.

The surprising blacklist was a result of an executive order signed in 2017 by President Trump that expanded sanctions on North Korea.

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