Trudeau welcomes North Korea's nuclear testing freeze

Trudeau welcomes North Korea's nuclear testing freeze

Having built a formidable nuclear arsenal to consolidate his regime North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has asked for the suspension of further nuclear and ballistic missile tests, stating that its quest for such weapons is now "complete". South Korea's military says North Korea is believed to have conducted its sixth nuclear test.

Margot Wallstrom said Saturday that it's "good news" that steps are being taken "to de-escalate and to defer from further bomb and missile tests".

In an earlier statement released by his office, Guterres wished the two Koreas ahead of their April 27 summit "every success in their courageous and important task of resuming honest dialogue leading to sustainable peace on the Korean Peninsula".

China, North Korea's main backer, welcomed North Korea's decision.

But the Post, citing a report by the Institute for Science and International Security, said North Korea could be stringing the US along, as Pyongyang has been seeking buyers for the graphite and even advertised its potency.

The proposed summit followed months of rising tension between the two countries over North Korea's refusal to stop ballistic tests.

Shortly before this, high-ranking officials from North Korea went down to its southern Korean Peninsula counterpart to meet with its highest political officers, though the leaders of each country weren't then immediately present. He also praised the establishment of a direct telephone link between the leaders of North and South Korea.

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Kim's announcement comes two days after Trump expressed optimism about negotiations to meet with North Korea's dictator, but promised to cancel the meeting, or even walk out during the summit if there are signs it "is not going to be fruitful".

North Korea announced early Saturday that it was suspending all nuclear and missile tests, and focusing its development instead on socialist economic development and peace.

Kim said he would "never use nuclear weapons unless there is a nuclear threat" or "transfer nuclear weapons or nuclear technology" to outsiders.

Several factors have driven the Korean rapprochement, including the North feeling that it can now negotiate from a position of strength, concern about the belligerence of the Trump administration, and the looming impact of sanctions.

The EU said it was "positive", but called for complete denuclearisation.

South Korea's presidential office has welcomed North Korea's announcement it's suspending nuclear and long-range missile tests as "meaningful progress" toward the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. "Look forward to our Summit", Trump wrote on Twitter.

Narang noted that North Korea has already conducted as many nuclear tests as Pakistan and India - six - and may indeed not need to conduct any more underground testing.

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