North Korea Demands Sanctions Relief to Restart Nuclear Talks

Focus is on mineral exports, fuel imports

North Korea nuclear talks have been on hold for quite some time. South Korean intelligence official Park Jie-won told MPs on Tuesday that the North Koreans are demanding specific sanctions relief before they’ll return to the talks.

This is generally unsurprising, as a big reason the talks stalled was that North Korea was expected to make more and more concessions and got no relief in return. This would clearly be an issue again now.

North Korea isn’t generalizing though, and is seeking specific relief that would be fairly low-cost to the international community, and valuable to them. This includes allowing fuel imports, allowing North Korea to resume mineral exports. There are also requests for certain luxury goods, allowing North Korea in particularly to import new suits.

South Korean MP Kim Byung-kee said he believes that the US should be able to get the North back to the talks by readjusting the sanctions. He added that North Korea was discontent with the US over lack of sanctions relief last time.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of