North Korea warns of war with talks offer

Eurasia News

A top North Korean envoy said Friday that US hostility could “lead to war any time” but he repeated an offer of talks that he said could include discussion of nuclear weapons.

The isolated, authoritarian state’s UN ambassador Sin Son-Ho told a rare news conference that the United States had driven up tensions through what he called its nuclear “threat” and by holding war games with South Korea.

But he added that North Korea is ready for “wide-ranging” talks with the US administration.

“This is our real intention to have talks,” Sin said. “In the talks we can have wide-ranging discussions with the United States including those of easing tension on the Korean peninsula.

“Also we can discuss the matter of the world without nuclear weapons the United States has already proposed.”

North Korea faces new sanctions over a recent nuclear test and the envoy reaffirmed the government’s defiant stance over the UN actions, calling them “blackmail”.

He said North Korea “has a legitimate sovereign right to self-defense deterrent as long as the United States continues its hostile policy towards (North Korea) and threatens it with nuclear weapons.”

The country will “never give up (its) self-defense war deterrent.”

Sin said US-South Korean war games risked leading the Korean peninsula “to another vicious cycle of tensions and conflict”.