South Korea's Moon asks for US-North Korea leaders' summit
August 7, 2020
Asia

South Korea’s Moon asks for US-North Korea leaders’ summit ahead of US election

SEOUL (SOUTH KOREA) – South Korean President Moon Jae-in said U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un should have a meeting again ahead of the US presidential election in November, a Seoul official told reporters on Wednesday.

Trump and Kim met for the first time in 2018 in Singapore, increased hopes of an agreement to get Pyongyang to cancel its nuclear weapons programme. But their second summit, in 2019 in Vietnam, crumbled when Trump rejected Kim’s offer to dismantle North Korea’s main nuclear facility in return for taking off some economic sanctions.

Moon made the remarks during a video conference with European Council President Charles Michel on Tuesday, saying another summit between Trump and Kim would help bring back the nuclear negotiations that has been held up for a while, an official at Moon’s office told reporters.

“I believe there’s a need for North Korea and the United States to try dialogue one more time before the U.S. presidential election,” the official quoted Moon as saying.

“The issues of nuclear programmes and sanctions will ultimately have to be resolved through North Korea-U.S. talks.”

Moon’s office had conveyed such viewpoints to Washington and the officials there are taking efforts, the official said.

Moon’s comments came days after US Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Biegun, who was leading working-level negotiations with North Koreans, said that there is still ample time for both sides to re-engage and “make substantial progress”.

Biegun, however, said a summit would be difficult before the November election where the members can be in attendance, citing the coronavirus which has swept the world’s diplomatic calendar.

“I think it’s probably unlikely between now and the U.S. election, as we see events being cancelled around the world,” Biegun addressed a virtual seminar hosted by the German Marshall Fund’s Brussels Forum on Monday.

(Photos syndicated via Reuters)
This story has been edited by BH staff and is published from a syndicated field
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