“I can confirm that we’ve completed our (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) policy review, which was thorough, rigorous and inclusive. We consulted closely with outside experts and our predecessors from several previous administrations, and our way forward draws from their lessons learned and shared,” Psaki told reporters aboard Air Force One in response to a question from CNN’s Arlette Saenz.
The US policy going forward, she said, will be a “calibrated, practical approach.”
“Our policy will not focus on achieving a grand bargain, nor will it rely on strategic patience. Our policy calls for a calibrated practical approach that is open to and will explore diplomacy with the DPRK, and to make practical progress that increases the security of the United States are allies and deployed forces,” she said.
The test had been widely expected. One US official told CNN that North Korea had launched short-range projectiles, possibly artillery or cruise missiles, not ballistic missiles — a key distinction that underscores the Biden administration’s view that it does not qualify as a serious breach and will not prevent the US from pursuing diplomacy with Pyongyang.
As they have been conducting this North Korea policy review, US officials have engaged in heavy consultation across the government and in Asia, as well as high-level consultations with former Trump administration officials. The end of the review comes after President Joe Biden met with Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, and one day after the White House announced Biden will be meeting with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on May 21.
The US has been in “close touch with allies and partners” throughout the review process. Biden discussed it with Suga while he was in Washington, Psaki said, adding that it’s been discussed at “every level.”
CNN’s Maegan Vazquez and Oren Liebermann contributed to this report.