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MON, 2014-11-24  KST

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U.S. official views North Korea's peace offensive as cause for concern
Updated: 2014-01-22 06:27:04 KST

North Korea has seemingly been on a peace offensive in the new year but visiting U.S. Deputy Secretary of State William Burns says the regime's tendency to have a sudden change of attitude worries Washington.

"I think the United States and our friends here in the Republic of Korea share a lot of concerns about the recent behavior of the DPRK leadership and the dangers, further wreckless behavior and provocations in the future."

There was a dramatic change in Pyongyang's attitude towards Seoul, after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's once-powerful uncle, Jang Song-thaek, was executed late last year.
Following its proposal last week to end all cross-border slandering, Pyongyang has persistently expressed a strong will to improve inter-Korean ties.
South Korea scoffed at the offer, with President Park Geun-hye telling the government to remain vigilant as the North engages in its propaganda offensive.
After a meeting with South Korea's First Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kyou-hyun in Seoul on Tuesday, Burns reaffirmed Washington's commitment to its ally.

"I emphasized once again the strong American support for President Park's approach to the DPRK and stressed once again the strong American support for the defense and security of the Republic of Korea."

The U.S. diplomat is expected to discuss the current state of North Korea with officials in China, before moving on to Japan where the country's denials of historical wrongdoings will be taken up.


"Once Burns wraps up his trip, U.S. Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs Daniel Russel, who will accompany Burns in China and Japan, will visit Seoul on Sunday to share the results of the discussions in Beijing and Tokyo.
Hwang Sung-hee, Arirang News."

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