by WorldTribune Staff, April 16, 2018
Ahead of upcoming summits with South Korea and the United States, North Korea used the Iran nuclear deal as an example of how a nation agreed to curb its nuclear ambitions in exchange for sanctions relief.
In the wake of its nuclear deal with world powers, “Iran is receiving full support from its people as Teheran is building up its defense capabilities without being disturbed,” the North’s state-run Rodong Sinmun newspaper said.
Pyongyang’s citing of the Iran deal “is seen as an attempt to bolster its bargaining position” ahead of the upcoming summits, Yonhap said in an April 16 report.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un is set to hold a summit with President Moon Jae-In on April 27. It will be followed by a meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump in May or June.
Rodong Sinmun noted the 45-year-long ties between the North and Iran and defended Teheran’s behavior after the 2015 deal was signed.
Trump has set a May 12 deadline to decide whether to revoke the Iran deal.
“Seoul and Washington previously called on the North to take a lesson from Iran and abandon its nuclear weapons program,” Yonhap said. “But North Korea rejected such calls, saying that its pursuit of nuclear weapons is deterrence against what it called Washington’s hostile acts.”
Pyongyang reportedly has suggested the need for phased and synchronous measures for denuclearization, but the U.S. is calling for the North to dismantle its nuclear program in a complete, irreversible and verifiable manner, Yonhap’s report said.