N. Korea eyes dialogue with US over looming rocket launch

Featured - December 5th, 2012
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North Korea’s announcement of a rocket launch later this month appears to be a move to draw in US attention as Pyongyang seeks diplomatic recognition from the West.

The looming rocket launch is also aimed at boosting Kim Jong-un’s leadership and bolstering the isolated state into a powerhouse and out of the the shadows of its failed launch in April, Asahi Shimbun reports.

“The launch will greatly encourage the Korean people stepping up the building of a thriving nation and offer an important occasion of putting the country’s technology for the use of space for peaceful purposes on a new, higher stage,” according to Korean Central News Agency.

But North Korea’s behavior have not only provoked international condemnation; it caught the attention of the West as well.

Pyongyang believes that by continuing its nuclear programs, Washington will agree to resume talks and acknowledge its activities as “peaceful” in return for North Korea’s “willingness” for a dialogue to suspend its ambitions.

Either way, the planned rocket launch would showcase national prestige or eventually hand full diplomatic recognition to the rogue state, Asahi Shimbun reports.

A statement from Pyongyang said that the launch was a request of late leader Kim Jong-il as part of his efforts to turn the impoverished nation into a powerhouse. However, initiatives have failed to lift the reclusive country’s crumbling economy as it struggles with chronic food hunger and energy shortages.