Pyongyang, Jan 10 (IANS) North Korea said Saturday it is ready to “temporarily suspend” its nuclear test if the US agrees to temporarily halt joint military exercises with South Korea this year.
The North Korean government made a “crucial” proposal Friday to the US side demanding suspension of joint military drills with South Korea this year, which “contributes to easing tension on the Korean Peninsula,” Xinhua reported citing the official KCNA news agency.
Pyongyang will in response temporarily suspend its nuclear test, it said.
This is an effort made by the North Korean government to “remove the danger of war, ease tension and create a peaceful climate on the Korean Peninsula”, said the report, which echoed top North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s appeal in his televised New Year’s address Jan. 1.
It is prompted by the desire of all Korean people to “open up a broad avenue to independent reunification in 2015” to mark the 70th anniversary of the division of the nation, it said.
The message sent to Washington has clarified Pyongyang’s stance that North Korea “is ready to sit with the US anytime” if Washington needed to hold talks regarding the issue, said the report.
The US should drop its anachronistic anti-Pyongyang policy and make a bold policy shift, the KCNA said.
Pyongyang Wednesday asked the US to lift “all unreasonable sanctions” against North Korea and to “make a bold decision to unconditionally stop all reckless hostile acts” towards Pyongyang.
Each year, South Korea and the US conduct a number of joint military drills, including “Foal Eagle” and “Ulchi Freedom Guardian”.