3

They have no diplomatic relations, they have no official channels. However, a situation can happen any time as Trump wants to send a message to Kim Jong Un, or vice versa. Closing all communication channels doesn't seem very wise to me. I think it is unlikely that any side would want to do it. For example, if Kim Jong Un wants to say:

In a half hour, we will send another missile into Hawaii, but don't worry, it won't reach it.

He has to be able to send this message, directly or indirectly, to Trump, because Trump will decide what to do if the military signals that there is a new missile launch. Neither of them wants a nuclear war.

Consider if they make another U.S. prisoner. Some channel must exist where they negotiate the price of his/her release. How does it work?

  • Just because countries have no diplomatic ties does not mean their governments do not communicate. Rex Tillerson recently had a meeting with the north Korean regime in hopes of a resolution. – Noah Oct 9 '17 at 1:34
  • 4
    I think the question should be reworded as "do they use Tweeter in NK?". – Evargalo Oct 9 '17 at 8:38
6

Or consider, if they make another U.S. prisoner. Some channel should exist where they negotiate the price of his release.

They negotiate those kind of things through Sweden.

The United States does not have an embassy in North Korea, and North Korea does not have an embassy in the US. That's what is normally meant when people say that they have no official channels of communication.

That said, there is no reason why someone in the US could not just pick up a phone and call North Korea. That may be what US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson meant when he said that there currently are direct channels of communication.

For example, if Kim Jong Un wants to say them: "In a half hour, we will send another missile into Hawaii, but don't worry, it won't reach it". He has to be able to send this message, directly or indirectly to Trump.

That seems an argument against maintaining lines of communication. In that narrative, communication encourages Kim Jong-un to go farther and farther. He would have to be more circumspect without it.

  • 2
    Related: There is a designated neutral site on the North/South Korean border for meetings between North Korean officials and the outside world, located at Panmunjom. – Royal Canadian Bandit Oct 9 '17 at 8:43

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.