During a visit to South Korea on April 12, Secretary of State John Kerry said that the United States will conduct talks with North Korea only if Pyongyang demonstrates a serious effort to negotiate ending its nuclear weapons program.
"North Korea will not be accepted as a nuclear power," CNN quoted Kerry after his arrival in Seoul.
"If Kim Jong Un decides to launch a missile, whether it's across the Sea of Japan or in some other direction, he will be choosing willfully to ignore the entire international community, his own obligations that he has accepted, and it will be a provocative and unwanted act that will raise people's temperature with respect to this issue," Kerry also stated.
The CNN report noted that while U.S. officials believe that North Korea is capable of test-launching a mobile ballistic missile at any time, a senior administration official said there is no indication that any such missiles are armed with nuclear material.
Kerry made similar statements in an interview with CNN's Jill Dougherty in Tokyo on April 15, saying: "The United States has made clear many times what the conditions are for our entering talks and they haven't changed."
"The conditions have to be met where the North has to move towards denuclearization, indicate a seriousness in doing so by reducing these threats, stop the testing, and indicate it's actually prepared to negotiate," he continued.
During a press briefing conducted by White House Press Secretary Jay Carney on April 12, journalists asked multiple questions about U.S. relations with North Korea. When a reporter asked if President Obama was concerned about reports that North Korea had the capability to deliver (presumably nuclear) weapons by ballistic missiles and that the unpredictable Kim Jong-un might even employ untested weaponry, Carney replied:
Click here to read the entire article.
Photo of Secretary of State John Kerry: AP Images