Апреля 24, 2018

South Korean officials may visit North Korea before summit

17 Апреля 2018, 09:12 | Taylor George



North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un attended a ballet performance by a Chinese art troupe with his wife in Pyongyang, official media reported Tuesday.

He added it will likely focus on issues of denuclearization and peace on the Korean peninsula, and an improvement in relations not only between the two Koreas but also with other countries including the United States.

Some of the issues that would need to be tackled include the hundreds of thousands of troops along one of the most heavily fortified borders in the world; submarines and ships patrolling on both coasts; South Korea's active military alliance with the USA; the hosting of U.S. forces; and North Korean artillery pointed at Seoul.

The two Koreas have yet to sign a peace treaty to replace the 1953 armistice that ended combat operations in the Korean war, with the U.S. and North Korea still at loggerheads after the three-year conflict ended.

One noteworthy comment from Kim to the South Korean special envoys last month was that he wished to be "taken seriously" during his talks with Moon and Trump. US officials have said those talks would focus on denuclearizing the North.

Moon has been reviewing a framework of the statement which could be called the April 27 declaration or the Panmunjom declaration, he said.

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The comments by culture minister Do Jong-whan came as the country's conservative newspaper Munwha Ilbo said the two Koreas were discussing plans to announce an official end to the military conflict on the peninsula. "It is very important for the United States as only after that timeframes for North's nuclear disarmament could be agreed at the North Korea-US summit".

"Without US support and agreement, it will be hard to follow through on inter-Korean agreements". "If it fails, Trump will have all the legal grounds to augment pressure on North Korea explaining it by the failure of diplomatic efforts", Rhee Sang Hyong added.

The telephone line could be operational by around Friday, but it is not clear when Moon and Kim would use it the first time, Im said.

The delegation of the Republic of Korea on March 5 met with the leader of the DPRK in Pyongyang.

No peace treaty has been signed to replace the 1953 armistice that ended the Korean War, and the USA and North Korea have been at loggerheads since formal hostilities ceased. The United States stations 28,500 troops in South Korea as a legacy of the conflict.

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