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Candidate Reaction: North Korea Removed from Terrorism Blacklist

Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama issued statements last night and this morning, respectively, on the Bush administration decision to remove North Korea from the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism. Their statements follow:

McCain: "Reports indicate that the administration may soon remove North Korea from the list of state sponsors of terrorism. I have previously said that I would not support the easing of sanctions North Korea unless the United States is able to fully verify the nuclear declaration Pyongyang submitted on June 26. It is not clear that the latest verification arrangement will enable us to do so.

"I am also concerned that this latest agreement appears to have been reached between Washington and Pyongyang and only then discussed with our Asian allies in an effort to garner their support. Diplomacy is a critical tool in ending the North Korean nuclear weapons program, and it must involve our closest partners in Northeast Asia. While we conduct this diplomacy, we must keep our goal in sight -- the verifiable denuclearization of North Korea -- and avoid reaching for agreement for its own sake, particularly if it leaves critical verification issues unaddressed. I am also concerned that recent negotiations appear not to have addressed the issue of North Korean abductions of Japanese citizens, a serious omission and directly relevant to any decision about North Korea's support for terrorist activities.

"As this process moves forward, I expect the administration to explain exactly how this new verification agreement advances American interests and those of our allies before I will be able to support any decision to remove North Korea from the list of state sponsors of terrorism."

Obama: "North Korea's agreement to these verification measures is a modest step forward in dismantling its nuclear weapons programs. President Bush's decision to remove North Korea from the list of state sponsors of terrorism is an appropriate response, as long as there is a clear understanding that if North Korea fails to follow through there will be immediate consequences. It is now essential that North Korea halt all efforts to reassemble its nuclear facilities, place them back under IAEA supervision, and cooperate fully with the international community to complete the disablement of the Yongbyon facilities and to implement a robust verification mechanism to confirm the accuracy of its nuclear declaration.

"The last eight years have demonstrated the necessity of confronting the threat from North Korea through aggressive, sustained, and direct bilateral and multilateral diplomacy. Too often, there has been a failure to effectively engage our partners throughout this effort. We must dramatically improve coordination with our allies Japan and South Korea, as well as with China and Russia, particularly as we ensure that any agreement reached on verification is fully implemented.

"If North Korea refuses to permit robust verification, we should lead all members of the Six Party talks in suspending energy assistance, re-imposing sanctions that have recently been waived, and considering new restrictions. Our objective remains the complete and verifiable elimination of North Korea's nuclear weapons programs. This must include getting clarity on North Korea's efforts to enrich uranium and its proliferation of nuclear technology abroad

"Looking ahead, North Korea must also resolve all questions about the abduction of Japanese and South Korean citizens, and of the Reverend Kim Dong-Shik. I urge the Bush Administration to continue to use our diplomatic and economic leverage to press North Korea to cooperate fully with Tokyo, Seoul and Washington on these matters.

"The Six Party Talks offer North Korea a clear choice. If North Korea abandons its nuclear weapons programs, there will be meaningful incentives. If it refuses, it faces a future of political and economic isolation."

By Web Politics Editor  |  October 11, 2008; 1:52 PM ET
Categories:  Barack Obama , John McCain , Primary Source  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Antiwar Protestor Disrupts McCain Iowa Rally
Next: John Lewis Condemns GOP Campaign Tactics


See Sarah Palin Impersonators, see clips of them very funny vote for your favorite.

Huckabee's Says, Terrorist may be be minipulating the market.

Posted by: pastor123 | October 13, 2008 12:02 AM | Report abuse

Cant wait till the final debate tuesday. Vote On What Your Dream Ticket Is, Obama Clinton? Obama Biden? Clinton Obama?
Here is a Video of what everyone did not see during the second debate. Its a debate out take. Watch the video at

Posted by: pastor123 | October 12, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

If I understand Senator McCain correctly, he is being consistent with his stance "do not negotiate with the enemy".

Our beloved president had maintained a similar unyielding position until recently when reality seemed to have intruded upon his characteristically dogmatic response. It may take another war or two before Senator McCain will honor this nation with a similar change in position.

Posted by: OscarMayer2 | October 12, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Sorry about that - wrong link. Here's Palin contradicting McCain on North Korea:

Posted by: mjsposato | October 12, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Too bad McCain forgot to tell Palin where he stands on this issue. Then she might not have contradicted him again:

Posted by: mjsposato | October 12, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Watch McCAin Drop the F word while talking to reporters.

Huckabee Claims that their is Economic Terrorism Happening in the Stock Market.

Watch This Debate Outtake. What you didnt see during the debate.

Posted by: pastor123 | October 12, 2008 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: todgully | October 12, 2008 5:03 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: thejaner | October 12, 2008 1:14 AM | Report abuse

Odd, but I've never heard of any North Korean "terrorist" acts recorded a la the Taliban or al-Qaeda. By terrorist, am I to infer that N Korea's nuclear program is the reason for this appellation?

The N Korean regime terrorizes its people. So this could mean it is a terrorist group though, fundamentally, one not concurrent with the context in which our most recent connotation of the word is being used.

I would therefore differentiate. N Korea is a homegrown terrorist organization working solely on its home ground. It's weapons are starvation, torture and summarily execution.

On the other hand, while Bush's Axis of Evil has lost a member which might be good news, Kim and his Girl Friend continue to desecrate the country and its peoples which is definitely not good news. For this reason, I would suggest that since America has not yet brought induced N Korea to accept the present of democracy, they should remain on The List until they show a willingness to become part of the New World Order.

Posted by: boredwell | October 11, 2008 11:57 PM | Report abuse

See John McCain and Tom Brokaw Cuss at each other, Guess not to happy about something during the debate.

See more Debate STuff at
Schedules, Poles, Videos, Outtakes.

Posted by: pastor123 | October 11, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

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