Published: Thu, August 16, 2018
World Media | By Cesar Oliver

Rival Koreas agree to third summit in Pyongyang

Rival Koreas agree to third summit in Pyongyang

It will be only the third time that a South Korean leader has traveled to the North Korean capital for such a meeting.

The two sides "agreed at the meeting to hold a South-North summit in Pyongyang in September as planned", Yonhap quoted a joint statement as saying, without giving a precise date.

On Monday, South Korean Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon and his North Korean counterpart Ri Son Gwon held a meeting in which they set a date and venue for the third summit between both the leaders.

President Moon is to meet Kim Jong-un next month on the first visit to Pyongyang by a South Korean leader in more than a decade.

The leaders of North and South Korea will hold a summit in Pyongyang in September, both countries announced Monday.

On Sunday, a North Korean propaganda website blamed Seoul's "blind obedience" to US-led sanctions for what it called the failure to make progress since Moon and Kim met on the border in a blaze of publicity in April.

Calling the Singapore summit the "starting point", Harris reiterated Trump's belief in the North Korean leader's commitment to denuclearization and the communist state's potential to lift itself out of poverty and have a brighter future should Kim fulfill his commitment.

"It would be hard in early September, which means until September 10", Moon's spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom told reporters, citing a "reason all reporters can guess". Moreover, the negotiations would be dedicated to what had been achieved by the two sides since their previous summits, the outlet suggested. "As President Moon stated, "the improvement of relations between North and South Korea can not advance separately from resolving North Korea's nuclear program'".

Senior diplomatic sources told CNN last week that Pyongyang has continually rejected Washington's proposals on denuclearization, calling them "gangster-like".

"In a realistic sense, this is the major transformation in the inter-Korean relationship, " North Korea's Ri said.

The rapid rapprochement between the two neighbours began this year ahead of the Winter Olympics in the South and paved the way for a landmark meeting between Kim and US President Donald Trump in Singapore in June.

Pyongyang has urged Washington to ease the economic punishments, but the United States says that can not happen until the North completely denuclearises.

With the USA not loosening sanctions against the North, the Pyongyang government needs momentum to push its demand that the U.S. offer a security guarantee in the form of a declaration of a formal end to the Korean War. On Monday, Harry Harris, the new United States ambassador to Seoul, said that it was too early to declare a formal end to the war or to lift sanctions.

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