Those imposing sanctions must be dealt serious blow: N Korea’s Kim

SEOUL: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said his country needs to deliver a "serious blow" to those imposing sanctions by ensuring its economy is more self-reliant, state media Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said yesterday.

It was the first time Mr Kim stated North Korea's position on the second US-North Korea summit in Hanoi that collapsed in February, and signalled a continued focus on economic development, a strategic direction officially declared a priority last April.

US-North Korean engagement has appeared to be in limbo since the Feb 27 - 28 summit in Hanoi, which collapsed over differences about how far North Korea was willing to limit its nuclear programme and the degree of US willingness to ease economic sanctions.

Despite no direct mention of the United States, by linking sanctions with "hostile forces" that impose them Mr Kim is showing a slightly stronger stance toward Washington than was recently in state media, analysts said. - REUTERS