North Korea seeks diplomatic relations with the US

Saturday, January 2, 2010

North Korea said in a statement on Friday that it wants to end its “hostile relationship” with the United States, and that it seeks to focus on six-party talks with the west. The statement released by major state run news outlets, said that the North is committed to "a lasting peace system on the Korean peninsula." The United States responded by saying that it will take the statement seriously if the North takes action on its word and returns to the six-party talks.

The Korean Peninsula has been split into North and South Korea since the Korean war, which ended in 1953 with a cease-fire agreement. The war between US led United Nations forces from the south and North Korean and Chinese forces.

North Korea has been hit with sanctions since its nuclear test in May of 2009. The sanctions hurt the North's already struggling economy.

An expert on North Korean-US relations, B.R. Myers from Dongseo University, said that "North has absolutely no interest in normalizing relations with the United States. As soon as the North does that, it loses all reason to exist," and "as soon as people think it is possible to get along with America, they will ask themselves why they need a 'military first' policy." The nations leader Kim Jong-il said along with the statements, "When the people's living standards are decisively improved, hooray for socialism and singing of Arirang of prosperity can ring out louder across the country and the gate to a prosperous nation be opened."