Trump says he'd be open to talking with North Korean leader

09 January, 2018, 00:59 | Author: Diane Mills
  • South Korean army's K-55 self-propelled howitzers take positions during a military exercise

South Korea will announce Tuesday its position on a deal with Japan over "comfort women" forced to work in Japanese wartime military brothels, the Foreign Ministry said, an agreement meant to "finally and irreversibly" settle the issue when adopted two years ago. "Considering that a variety of channels will be necessary if we assume that the Unification Ministry will be taking the lead in inter-Korean talks moving forward, I think they took the right approach to appointing people [to the negotiating teams]", said Cheong Seong-chang, a senior research fellow at the Sejong Institute.

(.) The breakthrough call between Seoul and Pyongyang came last week after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's New Year's address and the reopening of a communication hotline at Panmunjeom.

"The will to enhance North-South relations must be backed up not by words, but by practical actions to foster inter-Korean reconciliation and unity, and reunification", it said.

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley speaks during a U.N. Security Council meeting on January 5, 2018. South Korean President Moon Jae-in has expressed openness to their participation, and President of the Pyeongchang Organizing Committee for the 2018 Winter Olympic Games Lee Hee-beom has proposed powerful exhibitions of solidarity should North Korea be allowed to compete, suggesting the two Koreas march under the same flag in the opening ceremony and even form joint figure skating and ice skating teams.

But on Thursday, Trump called the new talks "a good thing" and said they had been prompted by his "firm, strong" stance, which has included harsher global sanctions and threats of military intervention if the North does not give up its weapons program.

Tuesday's talks are scheduled to take place at the truce village of Panmunjom in the heavily fortified demilitarized zone dividing the two Koreas.

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Jon Jong-su has also attended various inter-Korean talks, beginning with the inter-Korean summit in June 2000. "It's a start, it's big start", he said.

Hayley stressed during the interview that USA tension with North Korea is a "serious situation, and [Kim] can't sit there and imply that he's going to destroy the United States without us reminding him of the facts and the reality that if you go there, it's not us that's going to be detroyed, it's you".

Trump said he would like to see talks go beyond the Olympics and added: "At the appropriate time, we'll get involved".

The Trump administration has agreed to delay joint military exercises with South Korea until after the Olympics. "When discussing inter-Korean relations, the government will seek to raise the issue of war-torn families and ways to ease military tensions", Cho told a group of reporters.

Haley points to a stop to testing as well as discussion about banning the North's nuclear weapons.

"Basically, the two sides will focus on the Olympics". The North's chief negotiator is Ri Son-gwon, the chairman of North Korea's state agency in charge of affairs with the South. CPRF Director Hwang Chung-song is expected to be the counterpart of Ahn Mun-hyeon, deputy director general of the Office of the Prime Minister.

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