N.Korea ‘will­ing to de­nu­cle­arize’

Washington, Py­ongyang need to com­pro­mise: Moon

Global Times - - Front Page -

North Korea is “will­ing to de­nu­cle­arize” and the US is pre­pared to end hos­tile re­la­tions, Pres­i­dent Moon Jae-in said Thurs­day as he struck an up­beat tone ahead of his third meet­ing with Kim Jong-un next week.

The sum­mit will be the third be­tween the lead­ers of North and South Korea this year and comes as talks be­tween Washington and Py­ongyang over dis­man­tling the North’s nu­clear arse­nal have stalled.

Moon con­ceded there was a “block­age” and both sides needed to com­pro­mise to make some sort of progress on the con­tro­ver­sial sub­ject.

“North Korea is will­ing to de­nu­cle­arize and there­fore will­ing to dis­card ex­ist­ing nu­clear weapons... and the US is will­ing to end hos­tile re­la­tions with the North and pro­vide se­cu­rity guar­an­tees,” Moon said.

“But there is a block­age as both sides are de­mand­ing each other to act first and I think they will be able to find a point of com­pro­mise.”

Moon, who helped bro­ker the June sum­mit be­tween Kim and US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump and has called for a fol­low-up meet­ing be­tween the two sides, added South Korea would help me­di­ate con­tacts be­tween Washington and Py­ongyang to “speed up the de­nu­cle­ariza­tion process.”

Trump and Kim pledged to de­nu­cle­arize the penin­sula at their his­toric Sin­ga­pore meet­ing. No de­tails were agreed, and Washington and Py­ongyang have sparred since over what they meant.

Last month Trump can­celed a visit by Sec­re­tary of State Mike Pom­peo to Py­ongyang.

The new US en­voy for the North, Stephen Biegun, said in Au­gust Kim had promised “fi­nal, fully ver­i­fied de­nu­cle­ariza­tion” at the Sin­ga­pore sum­mit.

But Py­ongyang has slammed Washington for its “gang­ster­like” de­mands for com­plete, ver­i­fi­able and ir­re­versible dis­ar­ma­ment.

South Korea’s For­eign Min­is­ter Kang Kyung-wha said Thurs­day mak­ing progress on de­nu­cle­ariza­tion with North Korea is a “daily con­cern.”

“Get­ting trac­tion on the de­nu­cle­ariza­tion and peace process that is very much now in mo­tion – it’s a daily con­cern to get move­ment on this,” she told a re­gional eco­nomic fo­rum in the Viet­namese cap­i­tal Hanoi.

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