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Malaysia to settle its problem with North Korea - Dr Mahathir

13 February 2019

US and North Korean officials are set to hold more talks next week but hopes for concrete steps toward North Korea's denuclearization are fading.

4 - Despite optimism expressed by Trump and the White House, one of Trump's top military officials, Admiral Philip Davidson, who heads the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, has issued a statement to a senate committee concluding that it is unlikely North Korea will give up all of its nuclear weapons or production capabilities, but seeks to negotiate partial denuclearization in exchange for U.S. and worldwide concessions.

In order for Pyongyang to have any chance at hosting, North Korea will have to show a willingness to break down their nuclear program, in which President Donald Trump's summit in Hanoi at the end of the month with Kim Jong-Un will be vital.

The Stanford report said that North Korea was likely to have continued work on warhead miniaturisation and to ensure they can stand up to delivery via intercontinental ballistic missiles.

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Russia reiterates its calls for a peaceful resolution of the North Korean nuclear crisis as well as other issues troubling the Korean peninsula, Director of Russian Foreign Ministry's First Asian Department Georgiy Zinoviev said on Tuesday.

"Pyongyang "is using civilian facilities, including airports, for ballistic missile assembly and testing with the goal of effectively preventing "decapitation" strikes" on a smaller number of identified nuclear and missile assembly and manufacturing sites", the United Nations report said.

The White House declined comment on Davidson's remarks.

During an unprecedented summit in Singapore back in June 2018, Trump and Kim reached a nominal agreement to cooperate towards "denuclearization", but the pact did not define "denuclearization" and only required of North Korea to return the remains of Americans killed during the active period of the Korean War. The two men are expected to deliberate on the denuclearization of North Korea.

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Davidson also noted that North Korea had demanded "corresponding" USA steps and that Kim had warned in a New Year speech of a potential "new path", which could indicate an eventual return to weapons testing, if he was not satisfied with the negotiations. Progress however has stalled with the two sides disagreeing over what Kim's pledge means. If it goes ahead, it will be the first state visit by a North Korean leader since Kim's grandfather, Kim Il-Sung, back in 1964.

After the first summit, Trump tweeted that "there was no longer a nuclear threat from North Korea" and that "everybody can now feel much safer".

In talks with the United States, North Korea has been seeking a lifting of punishing US -led sanctions, a formal end to the 1950-53 Korean War, and security guarantees. "These capabilities continue to hold the United States, [South Korea] and our regional allies at risk".

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Malaysia to settle its problem with North Korea - Dr Mahathir