With his top priority as new president being to get the U.S.' COVID-19 situation under control, Joe Biden is not expected to tackle matters related to North Korea just yet.
"The Trump administration spent two months re-evaluating the Obama administration. Biden will announce new policies toward the Northbut not immediately."
But new the U.S. President has already made it clear that he is willing to meet with Kim Jong-unbut under one condition: that the Korean Peninsula is to be a nuclear-free zone.
"Because North Korea is a problem, and we are going to continue to do it so we can control them."
With the return of diplomats from the Obama era, the Biden administration is likely to seek a phased, bottom-up approach.
"We intend to review the entire approach and policy toward North Korea, because this is a hard problem that has plagued administration after administration and it's a problem that has not gotten better. In fact, it's gotten worse."
Blinken also hinted at the possibility of humanitarian aid being sent to Pyeongyang.
But Biden's focus on Washington's allies and re-embracing multilateralism may help facilitate talks with North Korea.
"Based on the South Korea-U.S. alliance, Seoul's role will expand during Washington's process of reviewing policies on North Korea. Considering there is no connecting link between Biden and Kim Jong-un, Seoul's role will be recognized which could help inter-Korean relations."
The South Korea-U.S. joint military drill scheduled for March could be the moment of truth, as North Korean leader Kim Jong-un said at the regime's party congress last week that Seoul and Washington should suspend their combined military drills.
Pyeongyang recently called the U.S. its "biggest enemy" and is expected to watch how the Biden administration unfolds before making its move.
Kim Dami, Arirang News.