State Department No. 2 hits North Korea over lack of negotiations, acknowledges Biden win

State Department No. 2 hits North Korea over lack of negotiations, acknowledges Biden win
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Secretary of State Mike PompeoMike PompeoPompeo visits Hill to support GOP push for Iran sanctions Pompeo joins GOP lawmakers on Capitol Hill to introduce Iran sanctions act House passes legislation to elevate cybersecurity at the State Department MORE’s second in command has become the latest Trump administration official to acknowledge that President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenCornyn, Sinema to introduce bill aimed at addressing border surge Harris to travel to Northern Triangle region in June Biden expected to formally recognize Armenian Genocide: report MORE will take over the White House in January.

Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Biegun said a “new team will soon be in place” to continue on with talks to try to push North Korea toward denuclearization.

“A new team will soon be in place, and I will fully share with them all of our experience, recommendations, and perhaps a little hard-earned wisdom,” Biegun said to a think tank audience in Seoul, South Korea.


“Among the points I will convey to the new team is this: The war is over; the time for conflict has ended, and the time for peace has arrived.”

Biegun’s comments come as President TrumpDonald TrumpUS gives examples of possible sanctions relief to Iran GOP lawmaker demands review over FBI saying baseball shooting was 'suicide by cop' House passes bill aimed at stopping future Trump travel ban MORE still refuses to concede and continues to challenge the election results, repeatedly making unsupported claims of voter fraud.

Pompeo, meanwhile, has avoided acknowledging Biden’s 2020 victory and in November joked that there would be a “smooth transition to a second Trump administration.”

Biegun, who was in South Korea this week to meet with security officials, also took the time to hit Pyongyang for squandering an opportunity for more denuclearization talks, which stalled after Trump first met with North Korean Kim Jong UnKim Jong UnSouth Korean leader pushes Biden to restart nuclear talks with North, knocks Trump Exclusive: GOP senators seek FBI investigation into Biden Pentagon nominee On North Korea, Biden should borrow from Trump's Singapore declaration MORE in Singapore in 2018.

The two signed a general agreement calling for denuclearization of the isolated kingdom, but failed to reach a deal at their second meeting in Hanoi, Vietnam, in 2019. Talks have moved forward little since then.

North Korean counterparts “too often have devoted themselves to the search for obstacles to negotiations instead of seizing opportunities for engagement,” Biegun said.

He called for North Korea to resume talks under the incoming Biden administration.