U.S. May Reassign North Korea Envoy: Report

Global Security Newswire Staff
June 13, 2014, 8:43 a.m.

The United States is ex­pec­ted to re­as­sign its spe­cial en­voy on North Korea is­sues and may not re­place him, the Korea Times re­por­ted on Fri­day.

Glyn Dav­ies, the cur­rent U.S. spe­cial rep­res­ent­at­ive for North Korea policy, is seen as a top can­did­ate for the post of U.S. am­bas­sad­or to Thai­l­and, uniden­ti­fied sources told the news­pa­per. Dav­ies, who has served as spe­cial en­voy since early 2012, is an­ti­cip­ated to be re­as­signed in the com­ing months.

However, it is not clear that the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion will re­tain the dip­lo­mat­ic post of spe­cial en­voy for North Korea fol­low­ing years of zero pro­gress on the de­nuc­lear­iz­a­tion front, ac­cord­ing to the Times.

Dav­ies brokered a nuc­le­ar and mis­sile-test­ing morator­i­um with Py­ongy­ang in early 2012 but the deal fell apart when the North sev­er­al weeks later launched a space rock­et — tech­no­logy with dir­ect im­plic­a­tions on the de­vel­op­ment of in­ter­con­tin­ent­al bal­list­ic mis­siles. Oth­er than that still­born ac­cord, no ser­i­ous nuc­le­ar dis­cus­sions have taken place since late 2008.

Mean­while, of­fi­cial Syr­i­an me­dia are re­port­ing that Dam­as­cus and Py­ongy­ang agreed in late May to deep­en their col­lab­or­a­tion on sci­ence, tech­no­logy and in­dus­tri­al man­u­fac­tur­ing, the Yon­hap News Agency re­por­ted.

The Syr­ia-North Korea re­la­tion­ship is closely watched by the United States and oth­er coun­tries due to pro­lif­er­a­tion con­cerns. Dam­as­cus is be­lieved by de­fense ex­perts to have been able to re­build mis­sile man­u­fac­tur­ing cap­ab­il­it­ies hurt by the Syr­i­an Civil War with help from North Korea. Dip­lo­mat­ic sources in 2012 said the North was caught at­tempt­ing to smuggle bal­list­ic mis­sile com­pon­ents to Syr­ia. And Py­ongy­ang is widely as­sumed to have provided Dam­as­cus with tech­nic­al sup­port to build an un­declared mil­it­ary re­act­or that was des­troyed in a 2007 Is­raeli air strike.

What We're Following See More »
Clinton Shows Up on Stage to Close Obama’s Speech
1 hours ago

Just after President Obama finished his address to the DNC, Hillary Clinton walked out on stage to join him, so the better could share a few embraces, wave to the crowd—and let the cameras capture all the unity for posterity.

Obama: Country Is Stronger Than Eight Years Ago
1 hours ago

In a speech that began a bit like a State of the Union address, President Obama said the "country is stronger and more prosperous than it was" when he took office eight years ago. He then talked of battling Hillary Clinton for the nomination in 2008, and discovering her "unbelievable work ethic," before saying that no one—"not me, not Bill"—has ever been more qualified to be president. When his first mention of Donald Trump drew boos, he quickly admonished the crowd: "Don't boo. Vote." He then added that Trump is "not really a plans guy. Not really a facts guy, either."

Kaine Sticks Mostly to the Autobiography
2 hours ago

Tim Kaine introduced himself to the nation tonight, devoting roughly the first half of his speech to his own story (peppered with a little of his fluent Spanish) before pivoting to Hillary Clinton—and her opponent. "Hillary Clinton has a passion for children and families," he said. "Donald Trump has a passion, too: himself." His most personal line came after noting that his son Nat just deployed with his Marine battalion. "I trust Hillary Clinton with our son's life," he said.

Bloomberg: Neither Party Has a Monopoly on Good Ideas
3 hours ago

Michael Bloomberg said he wasn't appearing to endorse any party or agenda. He was merely there to support Hillary Clinton. "I don't believe that either party has a monopoly on good ideas or strong leadership," he said, before enumerating how he disagreed with both the GOP and his audience in Philadelphia. "Too many Republicans wrongly blame immigrants for our problems, and they stand in the way of action on climate change and gun violence," he said. "Meanwhile, many Democrats wrongly blame the private sector for our problems, and they stand in the way of action on education reform and deficit reduction." Calling Donald Trump a "dangerous demagogue," he said, "I'm a New Yorker, and a know a con when I see one."

Biden: Obama ‘One of the Finest Presidents’
3 hours ago

Vice President Biden tonight called President Obama "one of the finest presidents we have ever had" before launching into a passionate defense of Hillary Clinton. "Everybody knows she's smart. Everybody knows she's tough. But I know what she's passionate about," he said. "There's only one person in this race who will help you. ... It's not just who she is; it's her life story." But he paused to train some fire on her opponent "That's not Donald Trump's story," he said. "His cynicism is unbounded. ... No major party nominee in the history of this country has ever known less."