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Senate Democrats threaten to block Trump-North Korea deal

Muslim Times(Web Desk) – US Democrats have warned President Donald Trump that they will block any deal with North Korea that does not guarantee a “verifiable” dismantlement of the country’s nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs.

In a letter to Trump on Monday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senator Bob Menendez said their party was not going to support a deal to ease sanctions on North Korea if the White House failed to meet their conditions.

“Sanctions relief by the US and our allies should be dependent on dismantlement and removal of North Korea’s nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs,” the two Democrats wrote. “Any deal that explicitly or implicitly gives North Korea sanctions relief for anything other than the verifiable performance of its obligations to dismantle its nuclear and missile arsenal is a bad deal.”

An acceptable deal in Schumer and Menendez’s view had to ensure a “complete and verifiable denuclearization of North Korea,” an end to Pyongyang’s ballistic missile tests, and “robust compliance inspections.”

Pointing to the important role that Congress had in enacting a sanctions relief, the opposition leaders warned that they would opt for “tougher sanctions and oversight” if they thought the Republican head of state was moving in the wrong direction.

“If we think the president is veering off course, we won’t hesitate to move, but let’s see where he’s headed,” Schumer told reporters later in the day.

The letter came days ahead of a highly-anticipated summit between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore on June 12.

Trump called of the meeting a short while back, after a brief war of words broke out between the two countries over the terms of a possible deal.

“Now that the meeting will proceed as planned, we want to make sure the president’s desire for a deal with North Korea doesn’t saddle us… with a bad deal,” Schumer said. “The president needs to be willing to walk away from the table if there isn’t a good deal to be had.”

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