Moon says he and Kim will discuss ways to move denuclearization forward

18 September, 2018, 11:27 | Author: Myra Gill
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Moon will hold at least two rounds of talks with Kim and try to convince him to carry out substantive steps towards disarmament that he can present to Trump when he meets him later this month on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in NY.

In his first meeting with Kim in April, Moon helped to ease escalating tensions on the Korean Peninsula.

This week's summit comes as the United States presses other countries to strictly observe U.N. sanctions aimed at choking off funding for Pyongyang's nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

Yet talks with Washington have reached deadlock, with both sides so far agreeing only to very general goals.

The acrimonious meeting of the Security Council was called by U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley, who accused Russia of pressuring independent United Nations experts to alter a report on implementation of sanctions against North Korea that she said contained "evidence of multiple Russian sanctions violations".

With ambitious cross-border economic cooperation projects stalled by global sanctions on North Korea, Moon is focusing on reaching a specific agreement to ease military tensions and build a peace regime, experts said.

North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un (right) and South Korea's President Moon Jae-in (left) walk together after a tree-planting ceremony at the truce village of Panmunjom on 27 April 2018.

Speculation has been rising here that Moon will propose a formula to Kim, to which the North Korean leader will make a "verbal commitment" to provide a detailed list of its nuclear arsenal, and the U.S., in return, would reward it with an agreement to end the war.

"Given U.S. scepticism that South Korea may have oversold Kim's willingness to denuclearise, how President Moon delivers his sincerity toward denuclearisation to Trump would be a key factor for the fate of their second summit", Lee told a forum on Monday in Seoul. Pyongyang has appealed directly to Trump to fulfill his promises in Singapore and make an end-of-war declaration prior to taking steps on denuclearization.


Moon's plane had taken off from the military's Seoul Air Base for the 80-minute flight to the North Korean capital, with the president and his wife smiling and waving to well-wishers before boarding. On Wednesday, Moon and Kim will hold their second meeting.

As the North has urged more of a quid pro quo approach in the negotiations, one avenue of discussion could be the issue of a declaration to end the Korean War, a step ahead of a formal peace treaty.

Withdrawing of guard posts from the heavily fortified Demilitarized Zone, disarming the jointly controlled security area inside the DMZ and excavating war remains buried along the border with North Korea are some of the measures being considered.

The North's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said the summit "will offer an important opportunity in further accelerating the development of inter-Korean relations that is making a new history".

Other business leaders in the entourage of South Korean President Moon Jae-in include Chey Tae-won, chairman of SK Group, Hyun Jeong-eun, chairwoman of Hyundai Group, Kim Yong-hwan, vice-chairman of Hyundai Motor Group, and Choi Jeong-woo, chairman of POSCO.

Whatever the outcome of the third inter-Korean summit, its impact on the alliance between the US and South Korea is likely to be limited.

In June, analysts at Samsung Securities released an in-depth, if not optimistic, report on the economic potential of the North.

"If North Korea-U.S. dialogue is restarted after this visit, it would have much significance in itself", Moon said before his departure. -North Korean confrontation. But the success of his efforts will continue to depend on the ability of the United States and South Korea to coordinate effectively. But these steps have neither reduced the North Korean threat nor diminished US skepticism about Kim's declared openness to eventual denuclearization.

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