South Korean President Moon Jae has hinted at the possibility that South Korea and the US could come to the table with North Korea for a three-way meeting.
The aim of the meeting would be to end North Korea’s nuclear threats and establish peace on the Korean peninsula.
Moon, speaking at a meeting of the Inter-Korean Summit Preparatory Committee, was reported by CNN saying:
Through these talks and future talks, we must end the nuclear and peace issue on the Korean Peninsula. It is necessary to make it possible for the two Koreas to live together peacefully without interfering with each other or damaging each other.
A reporte in the Financial Times added:
Depending on progress, it may lead to a three-way summit between South and North Korea and the US.
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Meanwhile Seoul has proposed high-level talks with Pyongyang at Panmunjom on 29 March ahead of the North and South Korean summit set for April.
The US President Donald Trump has also accepted an invitation to meet with the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un sometime before the end of May — the first time a sitting US president has ever met with a member of North Korea’s ruling Kim family.
However, this is the first time three-way talks have been suggested.
Why it matters:
Earlier this week Kim Jong-un told South Korean envoys he is willing to negotiate with the US on abandoning his country’s nuclear weapons, it was reported by the New York Times.
That is the first time the country has ever said it is willing to discuss relinquishing its nukes in return for security guarantees from the US.
A South Korean statement read:
“The North expressed its willingness to hold a heartfelt dialogue with the United States on the issues of denuclearisation and normalising relations with the US. It made it clear that while dialogue is continuing, it will not attempt any strategic provocations, such as nuclear and ballistic missile tests.
South Korea is also in talks with China and Japan for a three-way summit in Tokyo in early May — something that has not happened since November 2015.
Regional territorial and historical disputes have damped expectations countries in the region can resolve the conflict with North Korea and achieve peace on the peninsula.
Meanwhile, the North’s KCNA news agency has said there has been a sign of change in the country’s relations with the US amid a “dramatic atmosphere for reconciliation” in inter-Korean ties.
Earlier this month Trump welcomed what he called “possible progress” with the North.
For the first time in many years, a serious effort is being made by all parties concerned. The World is watching and waiting! May be false hope, but the U.S. is ready to go hard in either direction!
Possible progress being made in talks with North Korea. For the first time in many years, a serious effort is being made by all parties concerned. The World is watching and waiting! May be false hope, but the U.S. is ready to go hard in either direction!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 6, 2018