Published: Mon, May 28, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

S. Korea: Kim commits to summit with Trump, denuclearization

S. Korea: Kim commits to summit with Trump, denuclearization

Such moves would be created to reinforce to Kim that he faces more potential economic pain, especially if he takes any provocative action after Trump on Thursday abruptly canceled their planned June 12 summit in Singapore. Yet over the longer term, Moon's desire to cut a peace deal with North Korea during his single five-year term means Trump could find it harder to enforce his "maximum pressure" campaign if talks break down again.

The much-anticipated summit on the Korean nuclear crisis was initially scheduled for June 12 in Singapore.

"Chairman Kim and I have agreed that the June 12 summit should be held successfully, and that our quest for the Korean peninsula's denuclearization and a perpetual peace regime should not be halted", Moon said.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un reaffirmed his commitment to "complete" denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and to a planned meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump, South Korean President Moon Jae-in said Sunday.

Their quickly arranged meeting Saturday appears to highlight a sense of urgency on both sides of the world's most heavily armed border: Moon wants to secure a summit that he sees as the best way to ease animosity that had some fearing a war past year; Kim may see the sit-down with Trump as necessary to easing pressure from crushing sanctions and to winning security assurances in a region surrounded by enemies.

The Koreas' talks, which Moon said Kim requested, capped a whirlwind 24 hours of diplomatic back-and-forth. Worldwide journalists were present, but the US government can't verify the site's destruction.

Moon said he told Kim that President Trump has a "firm resolve" to end hostile relations with North Korea and initiate economic cooperation if Kim implements "complete denuclearization".

In this May 22, 2018, file photo, U.S. President Donald Trump, left, meets with South Korean President Moon Jae-In in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, as national security adviser John Bolton, right, watches.

The prime minister said he plans to hold talks with Trump over the telephone soon after returning to Japan.

North Korea summit could still happen on 12 June
Kim Jong-un's comments published by the newspaper did not include any mention of his potential meeting with Trump. US officials appeared to be pressing ahead in the belief that the summit remains on the table.

"While Washington and Pyongyang have expressed their hopes for a summit through published statements, Moon has to step up as the mediator because the surest way to set the meeting in stone would be an official confirmation of intent between heads of states", Hong said.

The two leaders embraced as Moon departed. But South Korea could be wary of joining any new US measures that might damage its own delicate diplomatic engagement with the North.

Howard X also made an appearance as Kim at the Winter Olympics in Gangneung in South Korea in February, bewildering North Korean cheerleaders who initially thought their leader had walked into a hockey stadium.

China, South Korea and the USA all back denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula, but differ on how to make that happen. When asked about the talks between Moon and Kim, the president replied, "the talks have gone very well".

But even though he was confident of Kim's intentions, Moon admitted that difficulties likely lie ahead.

Trump said in a letter to Kim on Thursday he was cancelling the planned Singapore summit, citing North Korea's "open hostility".

The South Korean president called on both sides to hold working-level talks that may help resolve these differences.

Howard X, who is a musician by training and said he still produces Brazilian music sung in Chinese, said his partner known as Dennis Alan impersonates Trump.

"The two sides are still very wide apart on what they feel denuclearization is", Klingner said.

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