Blinken does not foresee ‘grand bargain’ on North Korea
Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Sunday that there was no “grand bargain” prepared when approaching nuclear talks with North Korea, saying instead that denuclearization of the Korean peninsula would likely take “clearly calibrated diplomacy.”
When appearing on ABC’s “This Week,” Blinken was asked by host George Stephanopoulos whether nuclear weapons in North Korea are something the U.S. has to contend with, considering its arsenal has reportedly doubled in recent years.
“We don’t, and we shouldn’t, but let’s be honest. This is a hard problem,” Blinken said. “Previous administrations, Republican and Democrat alike, have tried to tackle it, and no one’s fully succeeded to say the least. In fact, the program has gotten more advanced and more dangerous over time.”
“I don’t think there’s going to be grand bargain where this gets resolved in one fell swoop,” Blinked opined. “It’s got to be clearly calibrated diplomacy, clear steps from the North Koreans, and it moves forward in that way.”
South Korean president Moon Jae-In made a visit to the U.S. last week and met in-person with President Biden. During their summit on Friday, North Korea was reportedly the top priority. Senior administration officials told The Hill that Biden reaffirmed the “ironclad” alliance the U.S. had with South Korea.
On the same day as his meeting with Moon, Biden appointed a special envoy to North Korea. The envoy, career diplomat Sung Kim, is an expert in North Korean policy.
“We both are deeply concerned about the situation,” Biden said alongside Moon. “Our two nations also shared a willingness to engage diplomatically with the D.P.R.K. to take pragmatic steps that will reduce tensions as we move toward our ultimate goal of denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.”