North Korea threatens US to stall nuke negotiations over Pompeo’s rhetoric

A top North Korean official has warned the US of “bitter regrets” if Secretary of State Mike Pompeo doesn’t rein in his rhetoric — and threatened to stall nuke negotiations over the ongoing war of words between the two nations’ diplomats.

“Pompeo has gone so far in his language and it made the opening of the expected DPRK-US working-level negotiations more difficult,” Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son Hui said Saturday, according to the state-run KCNA news agency.

“The US had better not put our patience to the test any longer with such remarks irritating us if it doesn’t want to have bitter regrets afterwards,” Choe said.

Pompeo criticized North Korea’s “rogue behavior” Tuesday, reacting to the series of short-range missiles it has fired in recent weeks to protest U.S.-South Korea joint military exercises.

That comment came days after Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho derided Pompeo as a “poisonous plant of American diplomacy” for promoting tighter North Korea sanctions.

North Korean officials have repeatedly demanded that Pompeo be replaced by a “more mature” negotiator in the wake of the February’s unsuccessful summit between President Trump and leader Kim Jong Un.

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