Sullivan: Comments by North Korea's Kim an 'interesting signal'

Sullivan: Comments by North Korea's Kim an 'interesting signal'
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National Security Adviser Jake SullivanJake SullivanNo. 2 State Department official to travel to China amid tensions Pence v. Biden on China: Competing but consistent visions Putin escapes accountability for chemical weapons use  MORE said on Sunday that recent comments made by North Korean leader Kim Jong UnKim Jong UnXi, Kim vow to strengthen North Korea and China's friendship, cooperation North Korea reports 'grave incident' related to COVID-19 North Korean state TV acknowledges Kim Jong Un's 'emaciated looks' MORE in which he urged for the preparation of "both dialogue and confrontation" were an “interesting signal.”

According to a Reuters report, Kim said on Friday that he preparing for both “dialogue and confrontation” with the Biden administration in his first comments of Biden's presidency.

During an appearance on ABC’s “This Week,” Sullivan told host George StephanopoulosGeorge Robert StephanopoulosSullivan: Comments by North Korea's Kim an 'interesting signal' Facebook VP says 2-year suspension of Trump from platform 'justified' Commerce secretary on cyberattacks against corporations: 'This is the reality' MORE that the U.S. is still waiting for direct contact with Pyongyang. 

“We are awaiting a clear signal from Pyongyang as to whether they are prepared to sit down at the table to begin working in that direction,” Sullivan told Stephanopoulos. “His comments this week we regard as an interesting signal. And we will wait to see whether they are followed up with any kind of more direct communication to us about a potential path forward.” 

Sullivan told Stephanopoulos that President BidenJoe BidenOvernight Defense: Senate panel adds B to Biden's defense budget | House passes bill to streamline visa process for Afghans who helped US | Pentagon confirms 7 Colombians arrested in Haiti leader's killing had US training On The Money: Senate braces for nasty debt ceiling fight | Democrats pushing for changes to bipartisan deal | Housing prices hit new high in June Hillicon Valley: Democrats introduce bill to hold platforms accountable for misinformation during health crises | Website outages hit Olympics, Amazon and major banks MORE wants to begin negotiations with North Korea on denuclearizing the peninsula, which is the administration’s ultimate objective. 

“Well, the clear signal they could send is to say, yes, let's do it. Let’s sit down and begin negotiations,”  Sullivan said. “We think that just in the case of the Iranian nuclear issue, with the North Korean nuclear issue, there's no substitute for diplomacy to begin to make progress towards that ultimate objective -- the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.”