News ID: 215795
Published: 0115 GMT May 27, 2018

South Korea: Kim commits to summit with Trump, denuclearization

South Korea: Kim commits to summit with Trump, denuclearization
AP

South Korean President Moon Jae-in said Sunday that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un committed in their surprise meeting to sitting down with US President Donald Trump and to a "complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula."

The Korean leaders' second summit in a month saw bear hugs and broad smiles, but their quickly arranged meeting Saturday appears to highlight a sense of urgency on both sides of the world's most heavily armed border, AP reported.

At the White House, Trump said negotiations over a potential June 12 summit with Kim that he had earlier canceled were "going along very well." Trump told reporters that they are still considering Singapore as the venue for their talks. He said there is a "lot of good will," and that denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula would be "a great thing."

The Koreas' talks, which Moon said Kim requested, capped a whirlwind 24 hours of diplomatic back-and-forth. They allowed Moon to push for a US-North Korean summit that he sees as the best way to ease animosity that had some fearing a war last year.

Moon told reporters Sunday that Kim "again made clear his commitment to a complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula," and that he told the South Korean leader he's willing to cooperate to end confrontation and work toward peace for the sake of the successful North Korea-US summit.

Moon said he told Kim that Trump has a "firm resolve" to end hostile relations with North Korea and initiate economic cooperation if Kim implements "complete denuclearization."

"What Kim is unclear about is that he has concerns about whether his country can surely trust the United States over its promise to end hostile relations (with North Korea) and provide a security guarantee if they do denuclearization," Moon said.

"During the South Korea-US summit, Trump said the US is willing to clearly put an end to hostile relations (between the US and North Korea) and help (the North) achieve economic prosperity if North Korea conducts denuclearization," he said.

Moon said North Korea and the United States will soon start working-level talks to prepare for the Kim-Trump summit. He said he expects the talks to go smoothly because Pyongyang and Washington both know what they want from each other.

Kim, in a telling line from a dispatch issued by the North's state-run news service earlier Sunday, "expressed his fixed will on the historic (North Korea)-US summit talks." During Saturday's inter-Korean summit, the Korean leaders agreed to "positively cooperate with each other as ever to improve (North Korea)-US relations and establish (a) mechanism for permanent and durable peace."

They agreed to have their top officials meet again June 1. Moon said military generals and Red Cross officials from the Koreas will also meet separately to discuss how to ease military tensions and resume reunions of families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War.

Saturday's Korean summit came hours after South Korea expressed relief over revived talks for a Trump-Kim meeting.

Moon has insisted Kim can be persuaded to abandon his nuclear facilities, materials and bombs in a verifiable and irreversible way in exchange for credible security and economic guarantees.

He said Sunday that the North's disarmament could be still be a difficult process even if Pyongyang, Washington and Seoul don't differ over what "complete denuclearization" of the peninsula means.

 

 

 

   
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