Korean leaders schedule third summit, envoy says

Korean leaders schedule third summit, envoy says

Korean leaders schedule third summit, envoy says

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un "reconfirmed his determination to completely denuclearise" the Korean peninsula when he met a high-level South Korean delegation yesterday.

The tweet came hours after Kim renewed his own commitment to the goal of denuclearization in talks with a special envoy from Seoul ahead of a summit planned in Pyongyang for September 18-20 with South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

A separate account by North Korean state media said Kim told the delegation that he wanted progress on denuclearization, without mentioning the USA or Trump.

National security adviser Chung Eui-yong, who led the five-member delegation, told reporters here on Thursday morning that Kim "reaffirmed his willingness to keep his denuclearization pledge".

Kim and Trump held a watershed summit in June in Singapore, during which they said they would work toward complete denuclearisation, establish "new" relations, and build "a lasting and stable peace regime" on the Korean peninsula.

However, Mr Kim has expressed a "sense of frustration" with the worldwide community for not appreciating what he called Pyongyang's "very significant and meaningful" steps, Mr Chung said.

Kim disagreed with that assessment, saying the denuclearization steps taken by his country so far are very significant and meaningful, according to Chung.

"After reading the personal letter the Supreme Leader expressed his thanks to the President for sending the good personal letter which expressed a firm will to wisely overcome many challenges in the future, too, and open a bright future of our nation while appreciating the fresh advance in the relations between the North and the South", the KCNA said.

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USA officials involved in the latest negotiations have said North Korea has refused to even start discussions about defining denuclearisation or other key terms such as "verifiable" and "irreversible", and has insisted the United States must first agree to simultaneous steps to reduce economic pressure.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in also agreed to meet Kim in the North Korean capital on September 18-20, the first such trip in 11 years.

"There is a still big gap between what the North considers sufficient goodwill gestures, like destroying its missile test stand or a nuclear test site, and what the USA wants, including on-site verification by experts", he said.

Kim also continues using the term "complete denuclearization" to suggest he expects American nuclear forces to be withdrawn from striking range of North Korea-a tall order given the very long range of USA nuclear forces.

"There is still an enormous amount of work to do". The U.S. president gave Moon's envoys a message to deliver to Kim Jong Un, who gave the officials a statement to send to the White House.

Since entering talks this year, North Korea has taken several steps such as dismantling parts of its main rocket launch site and closing its nuclear testing site. Kim wants to sign a treaty first, but American officials fear that he's after a propaganda win and will use the peace treaty to press for the removal of almost 30,000 USA troops in South Korea.

Seoul and Pyongyang both want a declaration to formally end the 1950-53 Korean War. The article said the North has shown "goodwill and generosity" through actions such as returning US war remains and dismantling a nuclear testing ground, but that the USA has failed to respond similarly.

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