North Korea criticizes UN chief over support for sanctions

North Korea is sharply criticizing U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres for supporting sanctions to pressure the country into negotiations with the U.S. on denuclearization, saying he appears to be acting as a "henchman" representing the United States.

North Korea's U.N. Mission stressed in a statement Thursday that there would be no nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula if there was no "hostile policy" by the United States, which has intensified "into nuclear blackmails and threats."

The mission called Guterres' remarks to the Munich Security Conference on Feb. 16 "reckless" and "ill-minded behavior based on extreme prejudice without any consideration of impartiality" — and without saying "a single word against the U.S. who is (the) main culprit for all aggravation of current situation."

Guterres urged international efforts to promote U.S.-North Korea talks.