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16 May, 2018

North Korea cancels talks with South, threatens to call off US talks over military drills

North Korea has canceled a summit with South Korea and has threatened to call off a summit between US President Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un over American military drills with South Korea, according to South Korean media reports.

Pyongyang has canceled talks with Seoul due to ongoing Max Thunder military exercises between the South and the US, Yonhap news agency cited North Korean media. The drills have been described by the North as a rehearsal for invasion of the DPRK and a provocation amid warming inter-Korean ties.

AFP reported that North Korea has also threatened to scrap the highly-anticipated summit between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. The meeting is scheduled for June 12 in Singapore.

The news comes as a blow after the historic talks between the leaders of two Koreas in April and the meeting between Kim and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Pompeo said Sunday that any deal paving the way for a nuclear-free Korean peninsula will have to include certain US safeguards, and reassurance that Kim won’t become a target of yet another regime change attempt.

Pyongyang had scheduled the dismantling of its nuclear bomb test site to take place between May 23-25, North Korean media reported on Saturday.

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