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U.S. remains open to dialogue with N. Korea: State Dept.

North Korea 03:58 September 18, 2021

By Byun Duk-kun

WASHINGTON, Sept. 17 (Yonhap) -- The United States remains committed to engaging with North Korea in a diplomatic approach to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula, a spokesperson for the U.S. State Department said Friday.

North Korea earlier said the continued deadlock in dialogue between the two was because of what it claims to be U.S. hostility toward the North.

"The United States remains committed to diplomatic approach to the DPRK, and we also call on the DPRK to engage in dialogue," Jalina Porter, principal deputy spokesperson for the State Department, said when asked to comment on the North's renewed accusation.

DPRK stands for the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the North's official name.

In a commentary carried by its official Korean Central News Agency on Friday (Seoul time), North Korea also accused the U.S. of a "double standard," noting that Washington has called the North's recent launches a provocation while keeping silent on South Korea's missile launch that followed hours later.

North Korea test fired two short-range ballistic missiles earlier this week, which coincided with Seoul's test launch of an indigenous submarine-launched ballistic missile the same day.

Washington earlier condemned the North Korean missile launches, calling it a clear violation of multiple U.N. Security Council resolutions.

Still, State Department spokesman Ned Price said dialogue was the only way forward.

"We are, in the midst of this, committed to a diplomatic approach to the DPRK, and we call on the DPRK to engage in a meaningful and substantive dialogue with us," he said earlier.

Pyongyang has stayed away from denuclearization talks with the U.S. since early 2019.


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