Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman met with South Korean officials in Seoul on Friday and said the US is looking to enter a dialogue with North Korea and that Washington has expressed that to Pyongyang.
“We are looking forward to a reliable, predictable, constructive way forward with the DPRK,” Sherman said, referring to North Korea. “We have offered to sit and dialogue with the North Koreans, and we are waiting to hear from them.”
In a statement on Sherman’s visit, the State Department said she discussed with South Korean officials “bilateral and multilateral cooperation to achieve the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.”
North Korea might not respond to the request for talks if the US still insists on the complete “denuclearization” of the Korean Peninsula. A more realistic approach would be for the US to offer sanctions relief in exchange for Pyongyang freezing its nuclear weapons program.
Sherman is set to visit China on July 25th and 26th. The visit will come amid heightened tensions between Washington and Beijing due to the Biden administration’s hostile China policies. Sherman said North Korea is one area where the US and China could cooperate.
“It has aspects that are competitive. It has aspects where it is challenging and aspects where we can cooperate,” Sherman said of US-China relations. “Thinking together about bringing the complete denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula is certainly an area for cooperation.”