July 05, 2017 11:13
North Korea on Tuesday responded to South Korea's repeated calls for dialogue, saying its nuclear weapons constitute its "sword of justice" and insisting that it will never relinquish them.
Meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump, President Moon Jae-in proposed sitting down for talks with the North if it freezes its nuclear and missile programs.
But the North's official Rodong Sinmun daily on Tuesday called the isolated country the "rocket leader of Asia" and scoffed that warnings from South Korea against provocations were "highly ridiculous."
Pyongyang accused Seoul of remaining dependent and submissive toward the U.S. as it implements sanctions and military pressure against the North. It urged Seoul to make up its mind on whether it is interested in "dialogue or confrontation."
North Korean International Olympic Committee member Chang Ung also doused hopes that cross-border sports exchanges could help improve inter-Korean ties, calling the idea "naive at best and even hopeless at worst."
In an interview with Voice of America, Chang said the idea of a combined Korean Olympic team is laughable and compared current cross-border ties to "crawling on thin ice."
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