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DPRK's state media urges US to drop sanctions

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The Democratic People's Republic of Korea's (DPRK's) state media called on Monday for the US to drop sanctions, saying Pyongyang had demonstrated good faith by ending its nuclear weapons testing and handing over the remains of US troops killed in the Korean War. 

The statements came just days after a confidential UN report concluded that DPRK has not stopped its nuclear and missile programs, in breach of UN resolutions. 

The DPRK and the US vowed to work to end Pyongyang's weapons programs at a landmark summit in June in Singapore, but have struggled to reach an agreement to accomplish that goal. 

The DPRK's state media accused Washington of "acting opposite" to its plan to improve ties, despite Pyongyang making goodwill gestures, including a moratorium on nuclear and missile tests, the dismantling of a nuclear site, and the return of the remains of US soldiers killed in the 1950-53 Korean War. 

Such "practical measures" had already deprived UN Security Council resolutions of their reason for being, the Rodong Sinmun, a newspaper in the DPRK said. 

"There have been outrageous arguments coming out of the US State Department that it won't ease sanctions until a denuclearization is completed, and reinforcing sanctions is a way to raise its negotiating power," the newspaper said in an editorial. 

"How could the sanctions, which were a stick the US administration had brandished as part of its hostile policy against us, promote the two countries' amity?" 

DPRK's propaganda websites on Monday also urged the US to drop sanctions and build trust. 

One outlet, Uriminzokkiri, lambasted the sanctions and pressure campaign as "anachronistic" and a hurdle for better relations, calling for efforts to officially declare an end to the Korean War. 

Maeri, another DPRK's outlet, stressed the need for US action to build confidence in response to the DPRK's moves to close its weapons programs and send back the soldiers' remains. 

"It takes two to tango," the website said. 

A spokesman for the Republic of Korea's (ROK's) presidential Blue House told reporters on Monday, hoping the DPRK to speed up denuclearization and calling the US to show a sincere attitude toward what DPRK demands as corresponding action.

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