N. Korea demands dissolution of UN command in S. Korea

Associated Press


North Korea’s U.N. envoy demanded the dissolution of the United Nations Command in South Korea on Friday, accusing the United States of using the force to prepare for war against the North and build an Asian version of NATO to realize President Barack Obama’s pivot to Asia.

Ambassador Sin Son Ho told reporters at a rare news conference that the most pressing issue in northeast Asia today is the hostile relations between North Korea and the United States, “which can lead to a new war at any moment.”

He reiterated North Korea’s surprise offer last Saturday of wide-ranging senior-level talks with the United States “to defuse tension on the Korean peninsula and ensure peace and security in the region.”

The proposed talks followed months of rising tensions and anti-American rhetoric by North Korea and the collapse earlier this month of proposed high- level talks between North and South Korea, amid bickering over who would lead the two delegations.

Sin stressed that the deteriorating situation on the Korean peninsula “is not caused by the DPRK,” the initials of the country’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

“All deteriorations and intensified situations [are] entirely caused by the United States of America,” he insisted on several occasions.

Sin said U.S.-North Korea talks should include replacing the armistice agreement that ended the 1950-53 Korean War — and he stressed that one of the “prerequisite requirements” for establishing “a peace mechanism” to replace the armistice is the dissolution of the U.S.-led U.N. Command.

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