142120
140876

World  

Third summit for Moon, Kim

The first inter-Korean summit of 2018, a sunny spectacle in late April, reduced war fears on the peninsula. The second, an emergency one in May, helped ensure a historic meeting between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump came off.

Now, at his third summit with Kim next week in Pyongyang, South Korean President Moon Jae-in faces his toughest challenge yet: delivering something substantive that goes beyond previous vague statements on denuclearization and helps get U.S.-North Korea talks back on track.

Negotiations between Washington and Pyongyang have sputtered in recent weeks, raising doubts about whether Kim is truly willing to relinquish his nuclear arsenal and putting pressure on Moon to broker progress once again.

The result will likely be a crucial indicator of how the larger nuclear negotiations with the United States will proceed. Moon will try to get Kim to express more clearly that he's prepared to abandon his nuclear weapons, which could create momentum for a second Kim-Trump summit.

Whether Moon succeeds, fails or falls somewhere in between, the third inter-Korean summit could help answer a persistent question: When Kim says he supports the "complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula," what does he actually mean?

Moon heads to Pyongyang on Tuesday facing lingering questions over his claim that Kim, during his conversations with South Korean officials, has privately expressed a genuine interest in dealing away his nuclear weapons and missiles.

The wave of optimism that surrounded the first two inter-Korean summits in April and May and the Singapore meeting between Trump and Kim in June conveniently overlooked disagreements about what exactly Kim had committed to.

"The third summit will bring more clarity to what North Korea means with the complete denuclearization of the peninsula," said Kim Taewoo, former president of Seoul's government-funded Korea Institute for National Unification. "If the North has been negotiating with goodwill all this time, Moon will be able to return with good results. But, regrettably, I see that possibility as low."

At his meetings with Moon and Trump, Kim signed statements pledging the complete denuclearization of the peninsula. But the North for decades has been pushing a concept of denuclearization that bears no resemblance to the American definition, vowing to pursue nuclear development until the United States removes its troops from South Korea and the nuclear umbrella defending South Korea and Japan.

The differences prompted Trump to cancel Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's planned visit to North Korea last month. 

"What the South and North now needs is not just another joint declaration, but finding ways to substantially develop relations," Moon said in a Cabinet meeting Tuesday. "We cannot cease our efforts to mediate and facilitate talks from the middle until dialogue and communication between North Korea and the United States flow smoothly."



More World News

World
141041
London Webcam
Webcam provided by webcams.travel
57111
Recent Trending
140532
Soft 103.9
138369
Castanet Proud Member of RTNDA Canada
137805



137751
140842