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27 July


Experts: North Korea was shocked by the requirements of the USA

Expert Zhang Liangui says the talks broke down because of the USA

Photo: AP

/NOVOSTIVL/ The Hanoi summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump collapsed mainly because the US changed its negotiating position at the last minute, according to a Chinese expert on North Korean affairs. This article appeared in the South China Morning Post.

Zhang Liangui, a professor of international strategic research at the Central Party School, said Kim was "shocked" at the talks in February when the US presented him with a new list of nuclear facilities that had not been disclosed by Pyongyang.

Zhang said the new list meant the US required Pyongyang to dismantle all of its underground nuclear arms facilities. That was in addition to what had previously been discussed – destroying the plutonium and uranium-enrichment plants housed at the Yongbyon nuclear complex.

"Originally both Washington and Pyongyang had tried to keep their bottom lines from each other because neither side had made up their mind, and the earlier posturing (by Trump) was not because the US side had any technical problems (in identifying North Korea’s nuclear facilities)".