North Korea Accuses U.S. of Being Slow to Fulfill Aid-for-Disarmament Deal
SEOUL, South Korea – North Korea on Friday accused the U.S. and its other nuclear negotiating partners of being too slow to award fuel oil and political benefits promised under an aid-for-disarmament deal.
The North Korean Foreign Ministry said in a statement it has disabled 80 percent of its main nuclear complex, but countries involved in six-nation disarmament talks have only shipped 40 percent of energy shipments promised to the North.
The energy-starved North was promised the aid equivalent of 1 million tons of heavy fuel oil under the February 2007 deal with China, South Korea, Russia, Japan and the United States.
The ministry statement said North Korea has shown its resolve to disarm by destroying a cooling tower at its Yongbyon nuclear complex — a measure it says was required under the denuclearization agreement.
North Korea submitted a long-awaited declaration of nuclear facilities to China last week, raising hopes for a breakthrough in stalled talks on its atomic programs. In exchange, Washington lifted some economic sanctions against the North and began steps to remove the country from a State Department list of states that sponsor terrorism.
North Korea's statement said however that the U.S. has not yet removed it from the terrorism list and that it will only move on to the next phase of the denuclearization process when it has been awarded all the energy aid and political benefits promised under the deal.