Koreas to hold high-level talks next week
Seoul [South Korea], August 9 : North Korea and South Korea are slated to hold high-level talks on August 13 to discuss the logistics for a possible meeting between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in, the South Korean unification ministry announced on Thursday.
The meeting would be held on the northern side of Panmunjom located in the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ). Both the Koreas would also review the implementation of their previous summit agreements. This will be the fourth time the high-level talks would be held. The meeting last happened in June.
From South Korea, unification minister Cho Myoung-gyon would be leading the delegation. The ministry said in a press release, "Through the upcoming high-level talks, the two sides will have an in-depth discussion on ways to bolster the implementation of the Panmunjom Declaration and exchange views on things needed to successfully hold an inter-Korean summit."
Kim and Moon had met at the inter-Korean summit in Panmunjom on April 27 and signed the declaration. As part of the agreement, the two leaders agreed to cease hostile acts against each other, increase inter-Korean cooperation in various development projects and work for the complete denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula.
The upcoming high-level talks come amid concerns that Pyongyang's denuclearisation process has been slower than expected ever since Kim and United States President Donald Trump had met in Singapore on June 12.
On Monday, Seoul asked Pyongyang to accelerate their denuclearisation process, while asking the US to faithfully carry out its promises on the same.
Asked about a possible breakthrough in the denuclearisation talks between North Korea and the US, Yonhap News Agency quoted Cheong Wa Dae (South Korean presidential office) spokesperson Kim Eui-kyeom saying, "We are asking North Korea to speed up its denuclearisation process. And to the US, we are asking that it to show sincere efforts about corresponding measures that North Korea is demanding."
Last week, a US official also stated that North Korea was reportedly constructing new intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) and its missile programme was doing "business as usual."