Reuters reports that North Korea’s top negotiator announced today that the hermit kingdom was suspending negotiations with the United States.
After spending the day in negotiations with the US delegation in Sweden, Kim Myong Gil, the North’s chief negotiator, blamed the failure to reach an agreement on the inflexibility of the Americans, who would not “give up their old viewpoint and attitude.”
“The negotiations have not fulfilled our expectation and finally broke off,” Kim told reporters outside the North Korean embassy in Stockholm.
Speaking through an interpreter, Kim said, “The U.S. raised expectations by offering suggestions like a flexible approach, new method and creative solutions, but they have disappointed us greatly and dampened our enthusiasm for negotiation by bringing nothing to the negotiation table.”
The US and Sweden have not commented publicly on the North Korean walkout, but President Trump has gambled heavily on using his personal relationship with Kim Jong Un to achieve North Korean disarmament. The two leaders met for bilateral talks in 2018 and 2019.
North Korea briefly stopped nuclear and missile tests in 2018, but the country has resumed missile launches this year with eight separate tests so far, including a submarine-launched ballistic missile earlier this week. A report in Time suggested that President Trump has shown little interest in the recent tests.