“I cannot suppress my surprise at such ignorant and stupid remarks gushing out from the mouth of the U.S. vice president,” Choe said on Thursday, in remarks carried by the state-run KCNA news agency. “We will neither beg the U.S. for dialogue nor take the trouble to persuade them if they do not want to sit together with us. Whether the U.S. will meet us at a meeting room or encounter us at nuclear-to-nuclear showdown is entirely dependent upon the decision and behavior of the United States.”
Choe appeared to be responding specifically to Pence’s Fox News interview on Monday, in which he said nuclear talks with Pyongyang will “only end like the Libya model ended if Kim Jong-un doesn’t make a deal.”
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As Common Dreams reported last week, North Korea has made clear that it regards the Trump administration’s repeated references to the Libya model—particularly by ultra-hawks like national security adviser John Bolton—as “sinister” regime change threats that could undermine the possibility of diplomacy.
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