North Korean Foreign Minister Blasts U.S. at United Nations Meeting

D-bo, Sept. 29, 2014, 10:12 a.m.

North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Su-yong on Friday accused the U.S. of "politicizing" the issue of human rights and of being a "hypocrite."   Speaking at the UN General Assembly, Ri reiterated that the North's nuclear weapons program is not a "bargaining chip to be exchanged for something else" but a vital defense. He added the issue would be resolved when the U.S. threat against the North disappears.

Ri had been expected to engage in a flurry of diplomatic activities since this was the first time in 15 years that a North Korean foreign minister attended a UN General Assembly.  But his diary remained empty except for the delivery of a letter from leader Kim Jong-un to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and a dinner hosted by a pro-North Korean group.  He did not even meet Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi. 

Asked about talks between U.S. and North Korean officials, the North's Ambassador to the UN Ja Song-nam said there was no chance of such contact.  One diplomatic source said Ja sounded irritated by his country's alienation from the international community.

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