Expectations for talks with US disappearing: N.Korea

Pyongyang, Aug 31 (IANS) A top North Korean diplomat said on Saturday that expectations for talks with the US were disappearing.

First Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui also warned the US not to test Pyongyang's patience, claiming that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's remarks made the resumption of working-level negotiations between the two countries more difficult, reports Yonhap News Agency.

"Our expectations of dialogue with the US are gradually disappearing and we are being pushed to reexamine all the measures we have taken so far," Choe said in a statement carried by the North's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

"We are very curious about the background of the American top diplomat's thoughtless remarks and we will watch what calculations he has. The U.S. had better not put any longer our patience to the test with such remarks irritating us if it doesn't want to have bitter regrets afterwards," she said.

Choe's remarks come after Pompeo on Tuesday said in a speech to American veterans that the North's "rogue behaviour could not be ignored" and the US has "galvanized global support to denuclearize North Korea".

He statement also came after Washington on Friday sanctioned three shipping firms for allegedly engaging in illicit ship-to-ship transfers of refined petroleum goods to North Korea.

The US has vowed to continue sanctions against the North until the regime dismantles its nuclear programme and negotiations between the sides have failed to make progress in recent months.

--IANS

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