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North Korea won’t surrender nuclear weapons under any circumstances: Ex-US diplomat



North Koreans will not surrender their nuclear weapons under any circumstances because they consider them essential to their survival, says a former US Senate policy adviser and diplomat.

James Jatras, who is also a specialist in international relations and legislative politics in Washington, DC, made the remarks in an interview with Press TV on Saturday while commenting on reports that the US is taking part in direct communications with North Korea.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said the United States has opened channels of communication with North Korea and is investigating whether the government in Pyongyang is ready to enter negotiations on surrendering its nuclear weapons.

“We are probing, so stay tuned,” the top US diplomat told reporters after he held talks with Chinese officials in Beijing on Saturday. “We ask. We have lines of communication with Pyongyang. We’re not in a dark situation, a blackout, we have a couple, three channels open to Pyongyang.”

Jatras said, “It’s good news to hear that there is a some kind of discussion going on between Washington and Pyongyang.”

“This is not an entirely surprise though. Over a month ago there were reports that in New York at the United Nations, there was what’s called a backchannel line of communication between the two governments,” he added.

“It is unclear however where this is going when we compare it to the public stance that the both countries are taking where all we are seeing really from either side is threats, and especially on the US side there is no indication that a compromise or de-escalation is even being considered,” the analyst said.

“The Chinese proposal for a double freeze, freezing the North Korean missile program and in exchange for the US and South Korea freezing their maneuvers and threatening moves against North Korea would be a very reasonable thing for both sides to do. I don’t know that’s being considered,” he stated.

“And of course talking about North Korea surrendering its nuclear weapons, I think, it’s highly unlikely under any circumstance. I do not see under what circumstances North Korea will give up those weapons which they consider essential to their survival,” Jatras concluded.

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