Tuesday, 25 September, 2018

North Korean delegation's South Korea visit meaningful: Pyongyang media

North Korean delegation's South Korea visit meaningful: Pyongyang media North Korean delegation's South Korea visit meaningful: Pyongyang media
Patty Aguilar | 12 February, 2018, 17:58

Kim Yo-jong and the North's honorary president, Kim Yong-nam, who officially led the delegation, were seen sitting next to the South Korean president on Sunday during the North Korean Samjiyon Orchestra's second concert at the National Theatre of Korea in Seoul.

"I never thought I would visit (the South) so suddenly and believed much would be unusual and different but I saw many things that were similar or the same", said Kim Yo Jong in a toast during Sunday's dinner, adding she hoped to meet the "friendly faces" before her later in Pyongyang.

Short track is one of the most popular sports in South Korea and as a series of home skaters reached the later rounds of the men's 1,500 meters and the women's 500, the North Koreans celebrated by waving flags in support.

The delegation will return to Pyongyang later today.

Moon was invited to a summit with Kim, even as the USA warned against falling for Pyongyang's Olympic charm offensive. Later, he skipped a formal dinner at which he was due to share a table with North Korea's ceremonial head of state Kim Yong Nam.

"There is no daylight between the United States, the Republic of Korea and Japan on the need to continue to isolate North Korea economically and diplomatically until they abandon their nuclear and ballistic missile program", Pence said as he flew back to the United States.

Showing a flair for the dramatic, Kim Yo Jong carried a blue folder with a personal letter from her brother, carefully placing it on a table where the delegation sat across from Moon and his aides.

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He is congratulating South Korea on hosting the games and pledges continued US support to address the North's nuclear threat. But South Korea has said the agreement failed to meet victims' needs, calling for more steps.

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So I think that makes it less likely that we will see a direct improvement of North Korea-US relations in the near-term future. They both agreed not to enter into negotiations with Pyongyang similar to those that have failed in the past, he said.

North Korea on Saturday proposed an inter-Korean summit to be held in Pyongyang and invited South Korean President Moon Jae-in for the same.

"Always stay healthy and please come and visit Pyongyang with President Moon", Kim Yo Jong told South Korea's First Lady Kim Jung-sook after the show ended. Once she returned from Switzerland, she began working for the North Korean government.

Moon said in response "let's create the environment for that to be able to happen", Blue House spokesman Kim Eui-Kyeom told a news briefing.

Part of the reason for this victory, diverging interests between Washington and Seoul aside, was the media coverage, which painted the vice president as a lonely loser in his quest to remind the world that North Korea is not a normal state, but a hostile nuclear power run by a murderous regime.

North and South Korean leaders swapped warm handshakes and smiles at Friday's opening ceremony, enabling the International Olympic Committee to present the Games as enablers of peace and take the media spotlight away from a Russian doping scandal that has plagued it for years. Mr. Moon has said in the past that he only wanted to meet the North Korean leader if they can make progress on nuclear issues.

That's unlikely to be an accident, said Mr. Han, whose career also included time as South Korea's ambassador to the United States.

Japanese editorials sounded a similar warning, saying dialogue would be meaningless unless it led to denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula.

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