Seoul envoy thanks Xi for 'big role' in NKorea nuclear talks

Lula Sharp
March 12, 2018

After the meeting last Friday (Korean time), the envoys said Trump agreed to hold a summit with Kim by May to achieve permanent denuclearization.

The situation on the Korean peninsula is a near "miracle", Japan's foreign minister said on Monday, according to a spokesman of South Korea's presidential Blue House, referring to a recent breakthrough on talks with North Korea.

"China commits itself to the efforts of realizing denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, maintaining peace and stability on the peninsula and resolving things through dialogue and negotiations", Yang said.

"Once again, we expect that China will continue to play an active and leading role and the South Korean government will continue to coordinate closely with China".

Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) shakes hands with South Korea's National Security Office chief Chung Eui-yong in Beijing on March 12, 2018. The South Korean leader visited Beijing in December on a trip aimed at thawing tense bilateral relations strained over Seoul's decision to host a USA missile defense system that Beijing sees as a threat to its own security.

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North Korea's silence on its upcoming summits with the United States and South Korea is probably due to caution over organising its stance regarding the meetings, South Korea's Ministry of Unification said on Monday.

The spokesman added that he believes the agenda of restarting Gaeseong operations could be discussed as progress is made on cross-border relations as well as North Korea's nuclear issue.

North and South Korea agreed to hold working talks to hammer out the details of the inter-Korean summit, but the two Koreas have not officially spoken since the South Korean delegation returned from the North last week, Baik said.

Beijing has played a key role in passing and implementing United Nations sanctions on the North, which are believed to have put huge pressure on the country's fragile economy.

Ahead of her visit, Lee Do-hoon, the foreign ministry's chief negotiator on the North Korean nuclear issue, will travel to the USA on Wednesday to arrange the foreign ministerial talks, according to the ministry.

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