North Korea Misses Nuclear Report Deadline

January 06, 2008 07:52 PM
by findingDulcinea Staff
Pyongyang reneges on an October 2007 agreement with the United States, failing to report on its nuclear program by Dec. 31. Some analysts considered the agreement flawed from the beginning.

30-Second Summary

The year-end deadline was originally set as part of a disarmament-for-aid deal brokered by the United States and regional powers.

Although North Korea has yet to reveal why it let the deadline lapse, the U.S. State Department remains committed to obtaining a declaration of the country’s atomic facilities and materials.

Christopher Hill, assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, plans to travel to Northeast Asia this week to discuss U.S. concerns with the other nations involved in the talks.

At The Wall Street Journal, this latest letdown will appear to confirm the skepticism it expressed in October 2007, when it categorized that month’s agreement as “faith-based nonproliferation.”

“North Korea is still only promising to disclose all of its nuclear program … Meanwhile, the Bush Administration is doing what it said in February it would never do: provide aid and recognition to Kim Jong Il's regime in advance of his keeping his side of the bargain,” wrote the Journal.
Pyongyang’s nuclear capabilities have been a major concern for the United States since October 2002. At that time, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State James Kelly accused North Korea of secretly enriching uranium and moving forward with a nuclear program in violation of the 1994 Agreed Framework. 

From that point on disagreements escalated, with each side accusing the other of breaking the Agreed Framework.

North Korea ultimately withdrew from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty on Jan. 10, 2003, and proceeded with its nuclear program in earnest.

In October 2006, the nation tested a nuclear weapon, declaring to the world that it was indeed a nuclear power.

Headline Links: North Korea silent as deadline passes

Background: Decades of tension

The current agreement and its February antecedent
The Syria connection?
A nuclear power
The 1994 Agreed Framework

Opinion & Analysis: Dealing with North Korea

Patient diplomacy
Time to get tough
The failure of the Bush administration’s North Korea policy

Reference Material: North Korea and Kim Jong Il


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