North Korean concessions the United States might want

By David Kim, February 14, 2019

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump meet in Singapore in 2018. Credit: White House photo via Twitter.North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump meet in Singapore in 2018. Credit: White House photo via Twitter.

In exchange for a peace declaration and even sanctions relief, the United States could ask North Korea for a number of concessions:

• An indefinite moratorium on all nuclear and missile tests, including those for short-range missiles.
• A verifiable freeze (cap) on weapons-grade fissile material, possibly through remote or online monitoring at enrichment facilities.
• A demonstrable reduction of nuclear-armed delivery systems (i.e., the Hwasong-12 or ICBMs) and nuclear-tipped missiles and launchers (Pukguksong). If ICBMs are not an option, the North could consider freezing production of ICBM transporter-erector launchers.
• Steps toward the verifiable dismantlement of Yongbyon nuclear facility.
• International verification of the disabling of the Punggye-ri nuclear test site and the missile engine launch site at Sohae (Tongchang-ri).
• The creation of a bilateral or trilateral (United States and South Korean) human rights working group, working in tandem with the Seoul-based United Nations human rights office.

A few longer-term US goals in North Korea may include:

• A broader declaration of North Korea’s nuclear weapons stockpile, delivery systems, and weapons-grade material.
• Confidence-building and conventional arms control measures similar to the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe.
• The dismantlement and destruction of all of North Korea’s plutonium and uranium enrichment facilities.
• The re-entry of North Korea into the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and full compliance with IAEA comprehensive safeguards.
• North Korea’s ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.
• Stronger enforcement of export controls (i.e., the North could join the Missile Technology Control Regime) and counter-proliferation measures to prevent third party transfers.
• Redirecting nuclear scientists and engineers towards civilian nuclear programs (i.e., the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Program).
• A declaration of chemical, radiological and biological weapons.
• Addressing North Korean cybersecurity, space and asymmetric capabilities.
•Comprehensive multi-tiered discussions on human rights violations.


Leave a Reply

Notify of


Receive Email