Merkel Proposes Iran-Style Deal To End North Korea Crisis

REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch

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Jacob Bojesson Foreign Correspondent
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German Chancellor Angela Merkel is ready to discuss a deal similar to the one made with Iran in 2015 to end North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs.

Iran agreed to curb its nuclear work in exchange for the lifting of most sanctions. Germany was one of the countries behind the deal, and Merkel believes it had a “good end.”

The chancellor is ready to sit down for similar discussions with North Korea as the situation becomes increasingly hostile.

“I could imagine such a format being used to end the North Korea conflict,” Merkel said in an interview published Sunday in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung. “Europe and especially Germany should be prepared to play a very active part in that.”

Merkel believes a diplomatic solution is the only way to solve the situation. The newspaper said she has been in contact with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe this week regarding North Korea. She will speak to Russian President Vladimir Putin Monday, and she has offered her services for any future negotiations.

“If our participation in talks is desired, I will immediately say yes,” she said. “A new arms race starting in the region would not be in anyone’s interests.”

Merkel is expected to secure a fourth term as chancellor in the Sept. 24 general election. A DeutschlandTrend poll released Thursday gives Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union and its sister party, the Christian Social Union, a 16-point lead over the Social Democrats in second place.

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