THE US vowed to continue to place “maximum pressure” on Kim Jong-un to stop building nuclear weapons following the sudden resignation of the US special representative for North Korean policy, it has emerged.
Joseph Yun, who worked in US foreign relations for 30 years, will stand down from his role on Friday.
The shock move came just days after North Korea announced it was prepared to hold diplomatic talks with the US.
However, US State Department spokeswoman, Heather Nauert, doubled-down on the Trump administration’s hard line for dealing with the unruly regime and pledged to continue to demand the denuclearisation of Pyongyang.
She said: “We are sorry to see him retire but our diplomatic efforts regarding North Korea will continue based on our maximum pressure campaign to isolate the DPRK until it agrees to begin credible talks toward a denuclearised Korean peninsula.”
She added that Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, was “reluctant” to accept Mr Yun’s resignation.
Kim Jong-un’s regime has de-escalated its rhetoric of nuclear war since the turn of the year as the rogue nation looked to send a delegation to the Winter Olympics in the neighbouring South.
Officials from the hermit state have since indicated that they would be open to talks with the US, providing the potential for a boost in relations.