nsucurrent.com March 17, 2018

North, South Koreas to hold landmark summit

09 March 2018, 03:11 | Colleen Roy

South Korean Official to Speak at White House

Trump says South Koreans to make announcement on North Korea at 7 pm

The United States formally concluded Tuesday that North Korea ordered the murder of a half-brother and potential rival to ruler Kim Jong-Un with the banned VX nerve agent.

"From looking at the news or Twitter, I believe President Trump is positive about the results of the North Korea visit (by South Korean officials)", Moon told political party leaders. They were the first South Korean officials to meet the young North Korean leader since he took power after his dictator father's death in late 2011.

Senior South Korean officials who met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Pyongyang on Monday also said the North expressed a willingness to hold talks with the United States on denuclearization and normalizing ties.

South Korea's goal was the denuclearisation of North Korea, nothing less, said Moon in comments distributed by the Blue House.

'This public display of contempt for universal norms against chemical weapons use further demonstrates the reckless nature of North Korea and underscores that we cannot afford to tolerate a North Korean WMD (weapons of mass destruction) programme of any kind'.

It has given food aid in the past, but even that has been brought down to the minimum as the United States steps up pressure to isolate North Korea. Additional sanctions on Pyongyang went into effect on March 5 after the finding was formally published, she said.

Next month, North Korea and South Korea will have the first meeting between their leaders since 2007 at the border village of Panmunjeom, said Chung Eui-yong, head of the South Korean delegation.

The meeting plans come after Kim Jong Un and President Trump have traded insults and threats of war
The meeting plans come after Kim Jong Un and President Trump have traded insults and threats of war

At the end of the day, however, Shorrock noted that the rocky relationship between North Korea and the US all depends on how the Land of the Free decides to act moving forward.

According to South Korean officials, Kim Jong Un promised to never use his country's nuclear armaments if he can be guaranteed security and if the United States were to stop making military threats against his nation.

Moon, a liberal who is keen to engage the North, likely wants to visit Pyongyang. Assuring that it no longer possesses the weapons and means to threaten Seoul, Tokyo, Honolulu and San Francisco with nuclear immolation will require a very intrusive, long-term verification regimen.

The Key Resolve and Foal Eagle exercises - which usually begin in late Feburary or early March - were postponed as part of Seoul's efforts to draw the North to attend the Winter Games in the South. Surely, Kim Jong Un still regards nukes as the ultimate insurance for the preservation of his tight family dynasty. Such a pause in testing has been a central demand of the Trump administration for a negotiation. Just look at where the North's nuclear and missile capability is after the numerous meetings and negotiations, including the two inter-Korean summits.

North Korea has agreed to halt any nuclear and missile testing while talks are ongoing.

In 2003 the Beijing-led Six Party Talks began, bringing together the US, both Koreas, Russia, Japan and China in a tortuous process. That is true. And its also a concern whether Trump's threadbare State Department has the expertise and wherewithal to exploit this momentous opportunity.

Speaking to Sputnik Radio's Loud & Clear, Simone Chun, a fellow at the Korea Policy Institute and a member of the Korean Peace Network, and Tim Shorrock, a Washington-based investigative journalist and author of "Spies for Hire: The Secret World of Outsourced Intelligence", discussed the recent breakthrough on the Korean Peninsula.

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