North Korea is threatening to pull out of a historic summit with the United States and South Korea unless its current terms are reviewed from their current “one-sided” affair, reports say Wednesday.
The North said it was being pressured to unilaterally give up its nuclear weapon without commensurate concessions from the U.S., according to a statement by its First Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye, South Korean media reported.
The announcement came hours after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un called off a high-level meeting with South Korea.
President Donald Trump recently announced that the three-way talks would hold in Singapore.
But Mr Kim Kye said a recent statement by thee U.S. National Security Adviser, John Bolton, which suggested that the North should follow the “Libyan model” of nuclear disarmament and provide a “complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantlement” was problematic.
“We will appropriately respond to the Trump administration if it approaches the North Korea-US summit meeting with a truthful intent to improve relations,” Mr Kim Kye said. “But we are no longer interested in a negotiation that will be all about driving us into a corner and making a one-sided demand for us to give up our nukes and this would force us to reconsider whether we would accept the North Korea-US summit meeting.”
Mr Trump did not respond to requests from reporters on Tuesday about the development. He walked past reporters at the White House lawn without responding to chants for his immediate reaction.
The development is said to have caught Mr Trump and other U.S. officials off-guard, according to CNN.
Some commentators said the suggestion of Libya, which was compelled to dismantle its nuclear arsenal in 2003 before economic sanctions were later relaxed, could hinder progress in negotiations with the North.