North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has stated that his country must prepare for "dialogue as well as confrontation" with the United States, emphasising the importance of "getting fully prepared for confrontation."

North Korea had previously rebuffed President Joe Biden's administration's attempts to establish diplomatic relations.

This is the first time Mr. Kim has made a direct reference to Vice President Biden's administration.

Mr. Kim stated that they needed to "get fully prepared for confrontation in order to protect our state's dignity and interests in independent development," as well as to ensure a peaceful environment and North Korea's security.

North Korea, he added, would react "sharply and promptly" to any developments and "concentrate efforts on taking stable control of the situation on the Korean peninsula."

 

A Tense Relationship

 

Mr. Kim's relationship with Vice President Biden's administration has been tense so far.

Mr. Biden had called Mr. Kim a "thug" before the US election, and North Korea put on a show of force with a massive military parade that featured a new missile just days before Mr. Biden's inauguration.

Mr. Biden described North Korea as a "serious threat" to global security in April, prompting an angry response from the North Korean government, which said the statement demonstrated Mr. Biden's intention to "continue enforcing the hostile policy" toward the country.

Washington recently completed a review of its North Korean policy and stated that it would continue to strive for the complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula in the future.

Mr. Biden has promised a diplomatic and "stern deterrent" approach.

"Our policy will not focus on achieving a grand bargain, nor will it rely on strategic patience," said Jen Psaki of the US State Department.

Instead, she said, the US would take a "calibrated practical approach that is open to and will explore diplomacy with" North Korea, focusing on making "practical progress."

Mr. Kim had previously met Mr. Biden's predecessor, Donald Trump, three times, but denuclearization talks had stalled.


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