Reassessing Canada-North Korea Relations

North Korea faces a critical transition with the recently announced appointment of Kim Jong-Un as leader and supreme commander of the country’s army following the sudden death of former leader Kim Jong-Il on December 17, 2011. Like many countries, Canada is carefully eyeing the military regime’s next moves as the country unites under the leadership of the relatively unknown youngest son of the late Kim Jong-Il. Canada has demonstrated its limited desire to engage with the reclusive military regime by imposing tough sanctions against the country. In tracing Canada’s history of engagement with North Korea, author Gerard Hervouet suggests the timing could be appropriate to give more credibility to Canadian values and principles by launching a multilateral humanitarian initiative with partners in the region.

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