Officials from Russia will be meeting with representatives from North Korea in Moscow next week to discuss the defiant Asian nation’s nuclear program.
The move is significant because it marks a drastic change in tone from North Korea.
The nation has not only have refused to participate in the “six-party talks” for many years but in more recent times have made aggressive moves and statements, reports CNN.
The “six-party talks” refers to nuclear negotiations involving Russia, China, Japan, the United States, North Korea, and South Korea which have seen little progress for a decade.
Over the past year, following Kim Jong Un’s rise to power, North Korea has become the center of diplomatic tensions in Asia.
Between weapon tests, which included use of a new long-range rocket and underground nuclear experiments, and hostile statements threatening to attack South Korea and the US, North Korea’s defiance has been cause for alarm for world leaders.
Kim Jong Un seems to be changing direction, though. After North Korea participated in talks in Beijing last week, China declared their desire to see diplomatic issues resolved through a continuation of peaceful dialogue.
While in China, Kim declared that it was the “dying wish” of North Korea’s founder to denuclearize the region, reports Reuters.
Even more surprising and hopeful, North Korea proposed talks with high-level officials from the United States, seeking to “ease tensions in the Korean Peninsula.”
Officials in the United States expressed skepticism about North Korea’s sudden reversal, citing a historical pattern of failing to honor diplomatic agreements. However, they would be willing to participate in discussions with the Asian nation.
Reservations about North Korea’s intentions are well deserved, in light of their aggressive tone in recent times.
Next week talk regarding North Korea’s nuclear program will begin in Moscow, between high level officials from both nations. Russia has expressed their desire to see North Korea’s nuclear program dismantled.