North Korea denuclearization could take a decade, experts say

Any diplomatic agreement in which North Korea agreed to give up its nuclear weapons could take as long as 10 years to...

Posted: May 29, 2018 11:37 AM
Updated: May 29, 2018 11:37 AM

Any diplomatic agreement in which North Korea agreed to give up its nuclear weapons could take as long as 10 years to implement, according to a new analysis from former US officials.

The assessment, released Monday by experts at Stanford University, comes as the White House is trying to verify how committed North Korea is to denuclearization and how it could be achieved, ahead of a potential summit between the two leaders.

Siegfried Hecker, a respected nuclear scientist who has previously traveled to North Korea to inspect its nuclear site, co-authored the roadmap with Robert Carlin, a Korea analyst who spent years at the CIA and State Department, and Elliot Serbin, Hecker's research assistant.

The trio identified 22 specific programs or activities -- such as the country's nuclear weapons stockpile, its missile arsenal or its nuclear reprocessing facilities -- that US negotiators need to address with North Korea. Halting or suspending many of these will likely take less than a year, the authors estimate, but eliminating or setting limits on them will take six to 10 years.

Last week, US President Donald Trump abruptly canceled his planned Singapore summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, in part due to concerns on whether Pyongyang was willing to agree to what's known as CVID -- complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantlement of the country's nuclear program.

After a flurry of diplomatic activity, Trump has hinted that the talks may be back on. US officials are in Singapore and South Korea to prepare for the summit's potential revival.

Sung Kim, the US envoy to the Philippines and a former ambassador to South Korea; Randall G. Schriver, the assistant secretary of Defense for Asian and Pacific Security Affairs; and Allison Hooker, director for Korea on the White House's National Security Council, traveled to North Korea Sunday and held talks with their counterparts.

Talks could potentially resume Wednesday at the demilitarized zone that divides the two Koreas, a person familiar with North Korea-US relations told CNN.

"The goal here is to create an environment where North Korea would not desire nuclear weapons development by removing the threat perception (posed by the United States)," said Chun Yung-woo, a former South Korean national security adviser.

Some of Washington's top officials working on North Korea -- including national security adviser John Bolton and Susan Thornton, the State Department's acting ambassador for East Asia and Pacific affairs -- have said publicly that Trump will seek a deal that involves North Korea rapidly denuclearizing. Thornton likened it to a large down payment at an event sponsored by The Wall Street Journal in Japan.

Analysts and weapons experts have been quick to point out that an agreement on denuclearization would take a significant amount of time, due to the complexity of the negotiations and the lack of trust between the two sides.

But the authors of the study say time is also needed to assuage North Korea's security concerns. Hecker, who previously served as the director of the Los Alamos National Laboratory, told The New York Times he believes it could take as long as 15 years, given the uncertainties in the process.

"Such assurance cannot be achieved simply by an American promise or an agreement on paper, it will require a substantial period of coexistence and interdependence," the study concluded.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 149940

Reported Deaths: 3779
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto10097104
Hinds9984199
Harrison7116110
Jackson6360119
Rankin5588103
Lee509195
Madison4799106
Forrest383186
Jones357688
Lauderdale3496147
Lafayette326051
Washington3179107
Lamar291550
Oktibbeha245462
Bolivar241384
Lowndes237364
Panola222350
Neshoba2206118
Marshall217250
Leflore205590
Pontotoc199928
Monroe198177
Sunflower191655
Lincoln190865
Warren176857
Tate169851
Union167325
Copiah164140
Pike162658
Yazoo156039
Scott154829
Itawamba152935
Pearl River152167
Alcorn151328
Coahoma150543
Simpson148353
Prentiss146230
Adams141950
Grenada140945
Leake134944
Holmes130861
George125524
Tippah125230
Covington123439
Winston122224
Hancock121139
Wayne117923
Marion116646
Attala113034
Tishomingo109442
Chickasaw107632
Newton105629
Tallahatchie97027
Clay91327
Clarke90553
Jasper82822
Stone77014
Walthall76928
Calhoun75513
Montgomery74525
Carroll72415
Lawrence71814
Smith71316
Yalobusha71327
Noxubee71017
Perry67026
Tunica61019
Greene60322
Claiborne58616
Jefferson Davis57017
Amite54014
Humphreys53619
Benton49318
Quitman4927
Webster44314
Kemper43618
Wilkinson39822
Jefferson35211
Franklin3395
Choctaw3357
Sharkey30917
Issaquena1164
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 244993

Reported Deaths: 3572
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson32314500
Mobile19859361
Madison13223148
Tuscaloosa13049154
Montgomery12342236
Shelby1031577
Baldwin873398
Lee775766
Morgan662650
Calhoun6301119
Etowah627666
Marshall627255
Houston525638
DeKalb485536
Cullman439442
Limestone425145
St. Clair419555
Lauderdale407854
Elmore406864
Walker3657111
Talladega351454
Jackson320423
Colbert311942
Blount292240
Autauga273542
Franklin252633
Coffee245415
Dale232654
Dallas226232
Chilton223438
Russell22193
Covington218934
Escambia198331
Chambers176850
Tallapoosa176391
Pike158614
Clarke158419
Marion140236
Winston133023
Lawrence127936
Pickens123518
Geneva12218
Marengo121524
Bibb117917
Barbour117310
Butler116541
Randolph102921
Cherokee102224
Hale97031
Clay91924
Fayette91616
Washington91219
Henry8546
Lowndes79929
Monroe78911
Cleburne77214
Macon73722
Crenshaw71130
Bullock69619
Perry6886
Conecuh68414
Lamar6798
Wilcox63518
Sumter58122
Greene42618
Choctaw42213
Coosa3444
Out of AL00
Unassigned00
Tupelo
Overcast
44° wxIcon
Hi: 52° Lo: 36°
Feels Like: 41°
Columbus
Overcast
43° wxIcon
Hi: 53° Lo: 37°
Feels Like: 37°
Oxford
Broken Clouds
39° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 33°
Starkville
Overcast
41° wxIcon
Hi: 52° Lo: 34°
Feels Like: 38°
WTVA Radar
WTVA Temperatures
WTVA Severe Weather