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`Untouchable` North Korea
DECEMBER 19, 2013 03:15  
North Korea is distancing itself further from the international community by making itself "untouchable."

"Rogue state" North Korea recently added an image as tyranny after its incumbent 29 year old leader Kim Jong Un put his uncle to death. As a result, the communist country is getting a frostier reception from the world. With agreement reached with Iran on its nuclear program, North Korea is now the sole country threatening the world with nuclear weapons. Indeed, it is a troublemaker.

North Korea is also a headache to China as uncontrollable. An official at the South Korea Presidential Office said, "China was trying to pull North Korea to its side by persuading it to give up nuclear weapons, but North Korea reacted (by purging Jang Song Thaek) and tried to pull China to its side," adding, "This is very unwelcome to China since stability of North Korean regime is important to it." Another high-ranking government official said, "Chinese President Xi Jinping has negative image on Kim Jong Un who is young and scatterbrained, and it seems that such view aggravated following Kim`s reign of terror," adding, "China is in a situation where it can`t and won`t intervene in North Korea`s internal politics."

It is difficult to predict how the U.S. and China will respond to North Korea whose future actions are unpredictable. Another Presidential Office official said, "Since North Korea is in a boiling situation, the U.S. and China are also closely watching the future movements of Kim," adding, "President Park Geun-hye ordered the establishment of a permanent council at the National Security Council because uncertainty surrounding North Korea is growing."

The Presidential Office is preparing for all possibilities regarding North Korea including its provocation, soft-line gesture and drastic incidents. A high-ranking government official said, "China is not assuming drastic changes in North Korea, and will likely embrace the country if it asks for understanding. However, it will accelerate its pressure on the North to give up nuclear weapons."

Yet concerns are rising that the President Office`s plan to turn North Korea into a normal state by helping narrow its gap with the international society will be set back. Even if Kim Jong Un takes a soft-line policy to avoid crisis, it will ultimately be more obsessed with the nuclear weapon program.

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