NK News

    • Two North Koreans cross into the South via west coast maritime border: Seoul
      Two North Koreans crossed in the South via the west coast maritime border on Saturday morning, the Korea Coast Guard has confirmed to NK News. The two men are set to undergo joint interrogation by South Korean authorities to determine whether they intend to defect later in the day. South Korean local media, including Yonhap News Agency, has reported that two men intend to defect.  Reports say a boat carrying the two was spotted early Saturday morning in the sea north of Baengnyeong Island near the disputed Northern Limit Line (NLL). One of the men is a commissioned military officer ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-19By [email protected]
    • Sanctioned and North Korea-linked oil tankers appear near China
      An oil tanker sanctioned by the UN for its role in smuggling oil products to North Korea appeared near the Chinese coast on Thursday, on the same day as the UN Panel of Experts (PoE) said that the DPRK continues its illicit oil procurement. The 36,000 tonne Yuk Tung was designated by the UN, along with its owner for conducting a “ship-to-ship transfer of refined petroleum product,” on March 30 and the vessel should now be subject to deflagging and prohibited from entering foreign ports. “On 20 January 2018, another ship-to-ship transfer took place between the designated tanker of the ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-18
    • Trump nominates Admiral Harry Harris for Ambassador to South Korea
      U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday nominated Admiral Harry Harris to be the U.S. Ambassador to South Korea, a diplomatic post which has remained vacant since the U.S. President took office. Harris is the head of U.S. Pacific Command and was formally set to be the ambassador to Australia before the decision was overturned at the end of April. The posting comes less than a month before Trump is set to sit down with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to discuss denuclearization, a meeting set for June 12 in Singapore. In the run-up to the negotiations, Trump has shuffled ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-18By Leo Byrne
    • Trump’s North Korea road trip: no backseat drivers please
      After first prematurely celebrating a historic “breakthrough” on the Korean peninsula, many American analysts and journalists have now made the snap calculation that Chairman Kim Jong Un plans to walk away from the June 12 summit with President Trump, replaying North Korea’s well-established pattern of raising tensions, probing engagement, and dashing hopes. Perhaps. But as veteran radio broadcaster Paul Harvey used to say, what about “the rest of the story”? A massive trust deficit is the operational baseline for U.S.-DPRK relations. The DPRK fears the U.S. intends to overthrow its government, and blames U.S. “hostile policies” for its decision to ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-18By Oliver Hotham
    • N. Korean ruling party agrees to strengthen military, national security: KCNA
      North Korea’s ruling party this week agreed on a series of measures to further strengthen the country’s military and improve national security, the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported on Friday. DPRK leader Kim Jong Un presided over the first Enlarged Meeting of the 7th Central Military Commission (CMC) of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK), state media reported. “The meeting discussed and decided on a series of organizational measures to further strengthen the revolutionary army of the Party militarily and politically and improve the overall work for defending the country as required by the developing revolution,” KCNA said in ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-18By [email protected]
    • North Korea plays hardball? – NKNews Podcast ep.19
      North Korea has begun to voice displeasure with what they perceive as South Korean enablement of bad behavior–in this case, war games with the U.S. and inviting high-profile defector Thae Yong-ho to speak at the National Assembly. The NK News team takes a look ahead and examines what appear to be new obstacles to peace. Plus, a future North Korean Mar-a-Lago, a new book by Thae Yong-ho, potential inter-Korean economic cooperation, the controversial case of the Nimpo 12, and the long-awaited release of three American prisoners from the DPRK. Note: this podcast was recorded before DPRK official Ri Son Gwon ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-18By Christina
    • The View from Jingshan: Chinese observers react to flurry of Sino-DPRK diplomacy
      As North Korea continued its diplomatic opening to the international community with the North-South summit, the announcement of denuclearization measures, and Kim Jong Un’s unexpected visit to Dalian to meet with Xi Jinping, Chinese media remained optimistic and congratulatory of the Chinese and North Korean leaders. Below the surface, however, developments suggested that China remains cautious and is working diligently to manage the trend, as well as its portrayal in domestic media. The visit by foreign minister Wang Yi to North Korea was the subject of a great deal of domestic analysis. However, Chinese media offered little commentary about Kim’s visit ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-17
    • N. Korea to get protections if deal reached, likely decimation if not: Trump
      Kim Jong Un will receive very strong protections in a denuclearization deal with the U.S., President Donald Trump said on Thursday, but added that if no deal is reached then North Korea will most likely face the “Libya model” in which the country was “decimated”. The comments were made following a series of articles from North Korean state media since Tuesday, which derided both the U.S. and South Korea for recent comments and actions that the country opposes. The articles include threats to cancel the expected summit between Kim and Trump. “Nothing has changed with North Korea that we know ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-17By Hamish Macdonald
    • No plans to scale back joint military drills: Pentagon
      The Pentagon on Thursday said there were no plans to scale back military drills with South Korea, despite North Korea threatening to cancel a planned summit with U.S. President Donald Trump. Speaking at a regular press briefing, Pentagon Spokesperson Dana White said there had been no conversations about changing the joint drills, which are defensive in nature. “The scope of our exercises has not changed … These are alliance decisions, this is something that we do to ensure the readiness of both our forces as well as the South Korean forces,” White told reporters. “There has been no talk of reducing ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-17By Leo Byrne
    • No further inter-Korean meetings until “issues” resolved: DPRK official
      No inter-Korean meetings will take place until Seoul rectifies ongoing North Korean grievances with its South Korean counterparts, a senior DPRK official warned on Thursday. The announcement follows the North’s abrupt cancellation on Wednesday of a scheduled inter-Korean meeting. In a statement, Pyongyang cited the staging of the Max Thunder joint drills, as well as a recent press conference by former DPRK diplomat Thae Yong-ho, among the reasons for its having withdrawn from talks. In comments carried by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on Thursday, Chairman of the Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Country Ri Son Gwon ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-17By Hamish Macdonald
    • In Pyongyang, anti-U.S. propaganda posters mostly disappear
      Anti-U.S. propaganda posters have mostly disappeared from Pyongyang and its environs, a review of mid-April photos shows, as have designs promoting North Korea’s missile and nuclear capabilities. Instead, posters and slogans are mostly now promoting topics including increased industrial production, scientific achievement and economic self-reliance. Of 103 photos of propaganda messages taken throughout Pyongyang and neighboring provinces this April, just two were anti-U.S. in nature and only two promoted nuclear weapons or missile capabilities. Left: All to accomplish the new year’s task! Unite under one mind; independence, Juche, and science and technology | Right: Soccer poster | Date: April 2018 ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-17By nknews
    • Air Koryo to begin weekly Pyongyang-Wonsan flights in June: state media
      North Korea’s national airline Air Koryo will begin operating weekly flights to the east coast city of Wonsan in June, online state news outlet the DPRK Today reported on Thursday. The new route, set to begin operating on June 4, comes amid an increasing state focus on the Wonsan-Kalma coastal area as a top construction priority for 2018. North Korea’s Kumgangsan International Travel Company first reported on the planned route in February, though did not offer a specific start date. According to DPRK Today, flights will depart from Pyongyang Sunan International Airport every Monday at 1000 and arrive at (Wonsan) Kalma Airport ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-17By Colin Zwirko
    • New North Korean website offering electronic payments, online bookings
      A North Korean IT company has launched an Amazon-style online retailer using an electronic payment system and offering services including online booking, the state-run DPRK Today reported on Thursday. The state-run outlet reported that the “Sili online store (실리전자상점),” recently developed by Pyongyang Kwangmyong IT Company, is being widely used by North Koreans and has received favorable reviews from customers. Sili (實利) roughly translates to “true profit.” The e-commerce market— which can be accessed using both mobile phone and PC — is reported to be an “electronic commercial service system for purchasers, sellers, and managers.” The store, the report said, differs from other ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-17By [email protected]
    • U.S. should be “more considerate” of North Korean complaints: ROK official
      The South Korean government hopes that Washington will be “more considerate” of issues raised by North Korea in the future, a senior official at the Blue House said on Thursday. The comments followed a standing committee meeting of the South’s National Security Council (NSC) held at 0700 local time and convened by national security adviser Chung Eui-yong. The meeting came a day after a senior North Korean diplomat warned the country “cannot but reconsider” its decision to participate in a summit with U.S. President Donald Trump slated to take place on June 12 in Singapore and the DPRK’s last-minute cancelation of ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-17By [email protected]
    • Thunderclouds over the honeymoon: Kim, Xi, and the looming Trump summit
      Amid the welter of diplomatic moves that have occurred in and around the Korean peninsula in 2018, the two meetings in quick succession between the North Korean leader and China’s eternally-consolidating leader, Xi Jinping, have been one of the more curious elements. After a six-year hiatus from meeting foreign leaders at all, Kim’s mode of turning so suddenly back to China was indeed extraordinary. The Dalian meetings on May 7 and 8 included a beach walk in an area famous locally for wedding photos, giving the summit the feeling of a wedding party or perhaps a reunion of long-estranged ... read more
      Source: NK NewsPublished on 2018-05-17By Oliver Hotham