North Korea slammed what it called the United States’ “gangster-like mindset” in denuclearization talks just hours after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo described the high-level negotiations as “productive” and insisted progress was made.
“We had many hours of productive conversations,” Pompeo told reporters Saturday in Pyongyang before boarding a flight to Tokyo. “These are complicated issues, but we’ve made progress on almost all the central issues. Some places, a great deal of progress. Other places, there’s still more work to be done.”
North Korea, however, poured cold water on the talks, saying the “attitude” of the US was “regrettable” and not in the spirit of the June 12 summit in Singapore between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
“We expected the US to bring constructive measures to build confidence in accordance with the spirit of the US-NK Summit,” the statement carried by state-run news agency KCNA said, according to a CNN translation of the Korean version of the statement. “However, the attitude of the US in the first high-level talks held on the 6th and 7th were indeed regrettable.”
The statement added, according to an English-language version of the statement released by KCNA: “The US is fatally mistaken if it went to the extent of regarding that the (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) would be compelled to accept, out of its patience, the demands reflecting its gangster-like mindset.”
The country called the outcome of the discussion “worrisome” and argued that the “cancerous issues” the US delegation raised were the same ones that had “amplified” distrust and the risk of war with past administrations, resulting in previous talks ending in failure.
He added, “No one walked away from that, they’re still equally committed, Chairman Kim is still committed.”
Uganda turns to China for $150 million loan after World Bank halts funding
East African country, Uganda will now seek to borrow $150 million from China’s Export-Import Bank (Exim), following lending restrictions by the World Bank for its anti-homosexuality law.
The action highlights the country’s growing dependence on Chinese lenders after the World Bank’s decision earlier this year stopping all new loans to the country.
Uganda is negotiating a loan to finance the construction of a pipeline to help export its crude oil to foreign markets with the Chinese export credit organisations SINOSURE and Exim Bank.
The money, the finance ministry says, is “to finance the supply, installation, commissioning, and support of the national data transmission backbone infrastructure.”
A law prohibiting LGBTQ was passed by the Ugandan legislature in May. Several stringent regulations were incorporated into the legislation, which drew strong criticism from the international community, including the United States, the European Union, the United Nations, and major corporations like the World Bank.
Before lending to Uganda was suspended by the World Bank, it was the country’s largest development partner.
The Anti-Homosexuality Act imposes severe penalties, including death, for a variety of homosexual offences.
Russia’s free grain to hit 6 African countries this week
Following Russian President Vladimir Putin’s promise to send free grain to six African countries in July, Russian shipments of donated grain are due to begin landing in Africa within days.
The supply will give fresh impetus to Russia’s bid to bolster its influence on the continent after criticism over its invasion of Ukraine and withdrawal from a deal that facilitated the export of Ukrainian grain through the Black Sea linked to pushing up global food and fertilizer prices.
The Russian Agriculture Ministry stated earlier this month that the shipments would amount to 200,000 metric tonnes by the end of the year, with Somalia and Burkina Faso scheduled to be the initial recipients. According to Putin’s July statement, Zimbabwe, Mali, Eritrea, and the Central African Republic are also expected to receive between 25,000 and 50,000 metric tonnes of grain each.
Two of the top exporters of grain and vegetable oil worldwide are Russia and Ukraine. Russia’s bombardment of Ukrainian ports and stores has affected the world’s supply of both commodities during the war. Russia in July also quit a year-old agreement that had allowed Ukraine to ship grain from its Black Sea ports, which, according to a study by a South African agency, helped feed about 95 million people but fell short in ensuring that fertilizer-originating from Russia could flow freely to global markets. Had that happened, food could have been produced to feed about 199 million people.
However, Putin, in order to fulfil what he claimed was Moscow’s crucial role in ensuring global food security, stated that Russia was prepared to replace Ukrainian grain exports to Africa on both a commercial and assistance basis.
While most African countries have adopted a non-aligned posture in the war, Russia’s influence in the continent has been on the rise lately, particularly with regard to defence relations.
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