U.S. Scholars to Visit North Korea

According to South Korean media reporting on November 5th, Jack Pritchard, President of the Korea Economics Institute (KEI) will go on a four-day visit in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) starting November 21st.

One of South Korea’s Foreign Ministry’s ranking officials indicated that they learned that Pritchard and Scott Snyder, the director of the Center for U.S.-Korea Policy at the Asia Foundation, will make a four-day visit to the DPRK, when the South Korean officials met with the delegation for Korean Peninsula Policy from the Council on Foreign Relations last week in South Korea.

Another news source revealed that Pritchard, Nicole Finnemann, the Director of Research & Academic Affairs at the KEI, and Scott Snyder will make a private visit to the DPRK and meet with the DPRK’s nuclear chief.

Pritchard’s group will make the trip for their own research purposes, but everybody is focusing on bilateral talks between the U.S. and the DPRK, which is making [Pritchard and Snyder’s] trip to the DPRK stand out. Lee Gun, Director General of the North America Department of the DPRK Foreign Ministry stated that the DPRK is open to resuming six-party talks and is also willing to meet U.S. officials outside of the so-called six-party talks, which suggests that the DPRK’s attitude is a bit more flexible than it has been.

Foreign relations sources said that Pritchard’s team has negotiated with the U.S. Department of State and will hand in the results after their trip to the DPRK.

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