U.S. envoy raises prospect of U.S. compromise in North Korea talksThe Saigon Times Daily U.S. President Donald Trump speaks as he prepares to sign an Executive Order during a meeting with manufacturers in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, U.S., January 31, 2019 – PHOTO: REUTERS WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - Washington is willing to discuss “many actions” to improve ties and entice Pyongyang to give up nuclear weapons, the U.S. special envoy for North Korea said on Thursday, but set out an extensive list of demands for the North, including a full disclosure of its weapons program. In a speech at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, envoy Stephen Biegun did not elaborate on what concessions the United States might make, but said the “corresponding measures” demanded by North Korea would be the subject of talks next week. Biegun will arrive in Seoul on Sunday for meetings with South Korean officials, before holding talks with North … [Read more...] about U.S. envoy raises prospect of U.S. compromise in North Korea talks
Invest in north korea
Donald Trump dangled the carrot of foreign investment in front of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un at their nuclear summit, but analysts say few will want to put money into one of the highest-risk business environments in the world. The U.S. president showed Kim a movie of bright lights, high-speed trains and soaring tower blocks - pitching a future that could be possible if Pyongyang gives up its weapons. Optimists say that with mineral wealth, cheap labour, and a helpful geographical location, the North has huge potential. But the history of overseas firms who have tried to set up operations in the isolated, impoverished country is a long and sorry one. Rules that can change on a whim, bills that are never paid, and the threat of expropriation hang over foreigners who step into the wildest of wild east investment destinations. For now, dozens of restrictions apply under the various sanctions regimes imposed on the North over its nuclear ambitions. Joint ventures are banned by the U.N. … [Read more...] about Invest in North Korea: money pit or golden opportunity?
Like many in North Korea's army of 1.2 million, Eom Yeong-nam spent more time holding the wooden handle of a shovel than a Kalashnikov rifle during his years in the 501 Construction Brigade. "Except for basic military training two to three months a year, we worked on building apartments or concrete structures for nine to ten months," said Eom, who served 10 years in the army before defecting to the South in 2010, a year before Kim Jong Un assumed power in isolated North Korea. The young leader has since expanded the use of so-called "soldier-builders", fuelling a construction boom as many of North Korea's Soviet-era conventional weapons become outmoded. His military focus is increasingly on "asymmetric" capabilities such as nuclear weapons, ballistic missiles and cyber warfare to deter North Korea's main enemies, the United States and South Korea. Tensions with both have been on the rise since the start of the year. North Korea, under tightened United Nations sanctions following its … [Read more...] about Shovels and old planes: As North Korea pursues the bomb, its military wanes
(VOVworld)- The South Korean Ministry of Unification said Thursday that his office will help South Korean firms evaluate a project to build a railway linking North Korea’s Najin port with the town of Khasan in Russia’s Far Eastern region. Economic sanctions imposed on North Korea on May 24, 2010, do not preclude this project in which South Korean enterprises would invest in North Korea indirectly through a third country. According to officials, South Korea will consider the effect of the project on bilateral relations and on Pyongyang’s policies before licensing the investment by South Korean firms. The project is a positive signal for the resumption of inter-Korean relations. … [Read more...] about South Korea considers allowing enterprises to invest in North Korea
Matthew Miller, the American held in North Korea since April for "hostile acts", began a six-year hard labor sentence on Thursday that he said involved farm work and isolation, media reports said. Miller, 25, said in an interview with the Associated Press he had written to U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama, Secretary of State John Kerry and his predecessor Hillary Clinton asking for help. "Prison life is eight hours of work per day," Miller, dressed in grey prison clothes and a hat, said in the video interview. "Mostly it's been agriculture, like in the dirt, digging around. Other than that, it's isolation, no contact with anyone." CNN also reported that a North Korean government official released a photo of Miller, taken on Wednesday, his head shaved and in grey prison clothes with the number 107 on his chest and staring away from the camera. North Korea's state media said on Saturday that he pretended to have secret U.S. information and was deliberately arrested in a bid to become … [Read more...] about American begins sentence of farm work and isolation in North Korea: reports