Tags: jimmy carter | nkorea | nuclear | program

Jimmy Carter: Current US Options on NKorea Nuke Program Won't Work

Image: Jimmy Carter: Current US Options on NKorea Nuke Program Won't Work
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By    |   Thursday, 05 October 2017 06:53 AM

The United States should send a high-level delegation to North Korea for peace talks, or to support a conference including North and South Korea and China, according to former President Jimmy Carter.

In a commentary for the Washington Post, the 39th president argues he learned important lessons about the isolated nation in the two decades he's spent talking with North Korean officials and private citizens.

"What the officials have always demanded is direct talks with the United States, leading to a permanent peace treaty to replace the still-prevailing 1953 cease-fire that has failed to end the Korean conflict," he wrote.

And current options under discussion to stop North Korea's nuclear weapons program — including military strikes on its nuclear facilities, severe economic punishment, and a protective nuclear agreement between China and North Korea — won't work, he writes.

"None of them offer an immediate way to end the present crisis, because the Pyongyang government believes its survival is at stake," he wrote.

According to Carter, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's statement last week that there are lines of communication to Pyongyang "is a good first step to defusing tensions."

"The next step should be for the United States to offer to send a high-level delegation to Pyongyang for peace talks or to support an international conference including North and South Korea, the United States and China, at a mutually acceptable site," he advised.

Carter said one thing he found about Kim Il Sung, Kim Yong Nam, president of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly, and other leaders was that they were "completely rational and dedicated to the preservation of their regime."

And what the North Koreans ultimately want is an end to sanctions, a guarantee there'll be no military attack and eventual normal relations with the international community, he wrote.

The people of North Korea — millions of whom "suffer from famine and food insecurity" — "almost unanimously believe that their greatest threat is from a preemptory military attack by the United States," he wrote.

"There is no remaining chance that it will agree to a total denuclearization, as it has seen what happened in a denuclearized Libya and assessed the doubtful status of U.S. adherence to the Iran nuclear agreement," Carter added.

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The United States should send a high-level delegation to North Korea for peace talks, or to support a conference including North and South Korea and China, according to former President Jimmy Carter.
jimmy carter, nkorea, nuclear, program
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2017-53-05
Thursday, 05 October 2017 06:53 AM
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