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Esper: U.S. committed to Singapore deal with N. Korea

All News 09:10 January 15, 2020

WASHINGTON, Jan. 14 (Yonhap) -- The United States is committed to the full implementation of a nuclear deal between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Tuesday.

Esper made the remark during talks with Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono at the Pentagon, saying the leaders' joint statement from their first summit in Singapore in June 2018 "includes the complete elimination of (North Korea's) weapons of mass destruction, their means of production, and their means of delivery," the Pentagon said in a readout.

"This goal is the same one laid out by the U.N. Security Council in multiple U.N. Security Council resolutions," it continued. "Secretary Esper thanked Japan for its strong leadership in United Nations Security Council Resolutions sanctions enforcement to disrupt North Korea's illicit ship-to-ship transfers and for hosting multinational forces that support this effort."

The Pentagon's description of the joint statement goes beyond what was actually written and it's unclear why such details were added.

The text reads that "the DPRK commits to work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula." DPRK stands for North Korea's official name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

Esper's remark comes as the implementation of the agreement has stalled amid North Korean demands for sanctions relief and security guarantees in exchange for its denuclearization.

This Reuters photo shows U.S. Secretary of Defense Mark Esper (L) speaking as Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono looks on during a joint news conference at the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, on Jan. 14, 2020. (Yonhap)


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