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  HOME | USA

South Korean Envoys to Brief US Officials in Washington on Pyongyang Visit

SEOUL – The South Korean delegates who met with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang are due to travel to Washington on Thursday to brief US officials on their recent trip to the North, a government spokesperson told EFE on Wednesday.

Chung Eui-yong, head of the South Korean presidential National Security Office, and Suh Hoon, head of the National Intelligence Service, will make a two-day trip to Washington on Thursday, local news agency Yonhap reported.

Chung said in a press conference on Tuesday that Pyongyang was willing to discuss its nuclear disarmament with Washington and added that he had an “additional” undisclosed message from Pyongyang and would later relay it to the US.

The South Korean senior officials’ trip to Washington takes place after their two-day visit to Pyongyang, which marked the first ever encounter between Kim and South Korean officials.

During the historic meeting, Pyongyang said for the first time in over a decade that it would hold disarmament talks with the US, on the condition that the safety of its regime be guaranteed.

In addition, Pyongyang also agreed to refrain from using nuclear or conventional weapons against Seoul.

For his part, US President Donald Trump reacted with both caution and optimism to Pyongyang’s remarks, saying he believed in Pyongyang’s “sincere” efforts in holding a denuclearization dialogue.

However, despite positive responses from Pyongyang, Washington still refused to call off its joint military exercises with South Korea in April, which had been postponed due to the Winter Olympic Games in PyeongChang.

The South Korean special delegations also concluded their trip to the North with another significant development, as the two countries agreed to organize an inter-Korean leader summit in April, marking the third of its kind in history, and to establish a direct hotline between Moon Jae-in and Kim Jong-un, which would allow for close consultation on alleviating the regional tension.

 

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