America has 'wrong' expectation of talks: Kim Yo Jong

America has 'wrong' expectation of talks: Kim Yo Jong

The influential sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said Tuesday that Washington had "wrong" expectations for dialogue with Pyongyang and was facing "greater disappointment", state media reported.

Kim Yo Jong's comments came after US national security advisor Jake Sullivan described her brother's first reaction to Washington's recent review of its approach to the North as an "interesting signal".

The Biden administration has promised a practical, calibrated approach, including diplomatic efforts, to influence the impoverished North to offer up its banned nuclear weapons and missile programmes.

In response, the North's leader Kim last week said Pyongyang must steel oneself against both dialogue and confrontation.

Washington considered his comments as interesting, Sullivan told ABC News, adding the administration "will wait to ascertain whether or not they are followed up with any quite more direct communication to us a few potential path forward".

But Kim Yo Jong -- a key adviser to her brother -- seemed to dismiss the prospects for an early resumption of negotiations.

The US appeared to be seeking "comfort for itself", she said during a statement reported by Pyongyang's official KCNA press agency .

It harboured expectations "the wrong way", she added, which might "plunge them into a greater disappointment".

Kim's comments came with the highest US diplomat responsible of North Korea negotiations on a five-day visit to Seoul, where he said Monday that Washington was able to meet with Pyongyang "anywhere, anytime, without preconditions".

Just hours before Pyongyang released Kim's statement, US envoy Sung Kim met with the South's unification minister, reiterating Washington's willingness to speak with the North.

The North at the weekend admitted it had been tackling a food crisis, sounding the alarm during a country with a moribund agricultural sector that has long struggled to feed itself.

It is now under self-imposed isolation to guard itself against the coronavirus pandemic, and as a result trade with Beijing -- its economic lifeline -- has slowed to a trickle while all international aid work faces tight restrictions.


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