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Diplomacy

NK reiterates importance of self-reliance before state establishment anniversary

North Korea says its policy of self-reliance is more important than in the face of increasing pressure from all sides.


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Updated: September 3, 2018

North Korea reiterated the importance of self-reliance in its decision-making process Monday ahead of the forthcoming anniversary of the government’s establishment.

“There is no cure-all prescription that could be applied to all countries and peoples,” the Rodong Sinmun, the official newspaper of the ruling Worker’s Party of Korea, said in an editorial.

“All countries which have received prescriptions by imperialists as they were without self-reliance have ended up being ensnared in social, political chaos and ethnic strife with no exception,” it added.

The North’s renewed emphasis on independence comes amid a stalemate in the nuclear talks with the United States following their historic June 12 summit, apparently as they are at odds over how fast and to what extent Pyongyang should give up its nuclear weapons program.

Citing the collapse of the socialist bloc in the early 1990s, the newspaper said that the consequences of not maintaining self-reliance would be disastrous.

“If pressure and interferences are accepted in politics and actions are taken at the mercy of others’ instructions, it would be impossible to maintain principles and consistence, which would eventually ruin revolution and construction,” it said. “Others’ experiences should be dealt with critically and creatively.”

With the 70th founding anniversary a week away, the North’s media have been ramping up the need for independence from outside intervention in its decision-making process on the economy and other areas.

In an editorial on Sunday, the newspaper shed light on efforts being made across the communist state to develop its economy based on its own resources and technology.

The emphasis on self-reliance can be interpreted as a way to keep its house in order ahead of the Sept. 9 state establishment anniversary and gird itself for potentially intensifying pressure from the United States for it to denuclearize.

Talks between the US and North Korea have been all but stalled as they have failed to find common ground in ridding Pyongyang of its nuclear weapons program.

Uncertainty has deepened further since US President Donald Trump recently canceled a planned trip by his Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to the North, citing a lack of progress in denuclearization.

Among other things, the North apparently wants the US to join the efforts to officially declare an end to the 1950-53 Korean War as a way to ensure regime safety. The US seems to want the North to take substantive denuclearization steps first before talking about an end-of-the war declaration.

The North earlier accused the US of making “gangster-like” demands in denuclearization talks, calling for a “phased” process and “simultaneous” concessions in return for steps it takes  in abandoning its nuclear weapons program.



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The Korea Herald
About the Author: The Korea Herald is the nation’s largest English-language daily and the country’s sole member of the Asia News Network.

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