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Nuclear envoys of U.S., S. Korea hold meeting over N. Korean provocations

North Korea 04:16 December 03, 2022

By Byun Duk-kun

WASHINGTON, Dec. 2 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's nuclear negotiator Lee Joon-il met his U.S. counterpart here on Friday to discuss ways to deal with increasingly provocative North Korea.

The meeting between Lee and U.S. Deputy Special Representative for North Korea Jung Pak came about a week after Lee was appointed the director-general for North Korean nuclear affairs.

"The two sides agreed that the international community must clearly show its determination to denuclearize North Korea is stronger than North Korea's effort to develop its nuclear and missile capabilities as North Korea continues its provocations that clearly violate multiple United Nations Security Council resolutions," South Korea's foreign ministry said of the meeting in a press release.

"To this end, (they) agreed on the need to thoroughly implement UNSC sanctions on North Korea under close cooperation with the international community and agreed to continue working closely together, while reviewing the simultaneous announcement of unilateral sanctions by South Korea, the U.S. and Japan," it added.

Washington designated three senior members of the North's ruling Workers' Party on Thursday for directing or supporting the country's illegal weapons development programs.

Seoul slapped sanctions on eight North Korean individuals and seven entities, with Tokyo imposing its own sanctions on three North Korean institutions and one individual the same day.

Lee and Pak held in-depth discussions on ways to limit North Korea's illegal cyber activities, according to the South Korean foreign ministry.

Adrienne Watson, spokesperson for the U.S. National Security Council, earlier noted Pyongyang is turning to "increasingly desperate ways" such as virtual currency heists and other cybercrimes to generate revenue for its weapons development programs.

"As the DPRK adjusts its tactics in the face of international pressure, we will continue to use all available tools to further limit the growth of these destabilizing weapons programs," Watson said in a statement released earlier Friday.

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

Lee Joon-il (R), director-general for North Korean nuclear affairs at South Korea's foreign ministry, and U.S. Deputy Special Representative for North Korea Jung Pak pose for a photo after holding talks in Washington on Dec. 2, 2022 in this photo provided by the South Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

Lee Joon-il (R), director-general for North Korean nuclear affairs at South Korea's foreign ministry, and U.S. Deputy Special Representative for North Korea Jung Pak pose for a photo after holding talks in Washington on Dec. 2, 2022 in this photo provided by the South Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

bdk@yna.co.kr
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