S.Korea says officials may visit N.Korea ahead of summit

S.Korea says officials may visit N.Korea ahead of summit

Minister Abdrakhmanov made the statement after the meeting with his South Korean colleague Kang Kyung-wha in Astana on April 17 and ahead of the historic summit between the Republic of Korea and the DPRK set to be held on April 27.

A successful Moon-Kim summit could help pave the way for the Trump-Kim meeting, which would be the first between a sitting USA president and a North Korean leader.

"Given the historical importance of the upcoming summits [inter-Korean Summit and the DPRK-U.S. Summit], the President of the Republic of Korea can not leave the country".

Some of the issues that would need to be tackled include the hundreds of thousands of troops along one of the most heavily fortified borders in the world; submarines and ships patrolling on both coasts; South Korea's active military alliance with the USA; the hosting of U.S. forces; and North Korean artillery pointed at Seoul.

One noteworthy comment from Kim to the South Korean special envoys last month was that he wished to be "taken seriously" during his talks with Moon and Trump.

Im noted that past agreements to denuclearize were not realized, partly due to lack of United States support or consent. During negotiations, agreement was reached on holding a meeting of leaders of the two countries.

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Moon Chung-in said North Korea this time knows it can not reach a breakthrough deal with the United States unless it accepts American calls for complete, verifiable and irrevocable steps toward disarmament.

Likely agenda topics include the North's nuclear weapons programme and general inter-Korean relations, but any joint economic efforts are unlikely to be discussed, he said.

"North Korea might have thought the USA won't begin a dialogue if it had incomplete nuclear and missile capabilities".

A direct phone line between Moon and Kim may be connected around Friday, Moon's Chief of Staff Im Jong-seok said in a briefing on Tuesday, adding that it hasn't been decided when they will hold their first conversation. He suggested that prospects for nuclear diplomacy would largely depend on what kinds of rewards the United States can offer to the North in return and whether the North will repeat its previous big demands such as the withdrawal of the US troops in South Korea.

A South Korean delegation met with Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang on March 5.

North Korea and the rich, democratic South are technically still at war because the Korean War ended in a truce, not a peace treaty.

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