Kim Jong Un on Monday warned the United States that he has a “nuclear button” on his desk prepared to be used if North Korea is threatened, however provided an olive department to South Korea, saying he was “open to dialogue” with Seoul.
After a 12 months dominated by fiery rhetoric and escalating tensions over North Korea’s nuclear weapons program, Kim used his televised New Year’s Day speech to declare North Korea “a peace-loving and responsible nuclear power” and name for decrease navy tensions on the Korean peninsula and improved ties with the South.
“When it comes to North-South relations, we should lower the military tensions on the Korean Peninsula to create a peaceful environment,” Kim mentioned. “Both the North and the South should make efforts.”
Kim mentioned he’ll think about sending a delegation to the Winter Olympics Games to be held in Pyeongchang, South Korea, in February.
“North Korea’s participation in the Winter Games will be a good opportunity to showcase the national pride and we wish the Games will be a success. Officials from the two Koreas may urgently meet to discuss the possibility,” Kim mentioned.
Lee Hee-beom, president of the Pyeongchang Organizing Committee, mentioned the group welcomed participation by the North Koreans.
“The (organizing committee) will discuss relevant matters with the South Korean government as well as the International Olympic Committee,” he mentioned in a press release.
South Korean President Moon Jae-in has mentioned North Korea’s participation will guarantee security of the Pyeongchang Olympics and proposed final month that Seoul and Washington postpone giant navy drills that the North denounces as a rehearsal for warfare till after the Games.
Rather than encouraging U.S. measures that “threaten the security and peace of the Korean peninsula,” Seoul ought to as a substitute reply to overtures from the North, Kim mentioned.
A spokesperson for Moon’s workplace mentioned they have been nonetheless reviewing Kim’s New Year’s Day speech.
Asked by reporters to touch upon Kim’s speech, U.S. President Donald Trump merely mentioned “we’ll see, we’ll see”, as he walked into New Year’s eve celebration at Mar-a-Lago, his elite resort in Florida.
The U.S. State Department didn’t instantly reply to a request for touch upon Kim’s New Year’s handle.