Friday, 24 May, 2019

Sweden says happy to help on N.Korea amid summit speculation

North Korea has yet to respond over the possibility of a summit betweet Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump Seoul has revealed North Korea has yet to respond over the possibility of a summit betweet Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump Seoul has revealed
Patty Aguilar | 17 March, 2018, 11:16

Talks between Sweden and North Korea in Stockholm will continue on Saturday after initially being due to end late on Friday, a source with knowledge of the situation said.

Senior South Korean officials who traveled to the North Korean capital of Pyongyang this month and met with Kim say he is willing to discuss the North's nuclear weapons program.

North Korea has yet to publicly confirm the summit plans, and the venue for the meeting remains up in the air, although a rare visit by the North's top diplomat to Sweden on Friday fueled speculation the Scandinavian nation might play host.

According to the White House, Moon and Trump "expressed cautious optimism over recent developments and emphasized that a brighter future is available for North Korea, if it chooses the correct path".

Both nations host tens of thousands of US forces and face a direct threat from North Korea's weaponry. She said that "we value this opportunity to arrange a meeting", though she didn't specify what she meant.

In a phone call with Moon, Trump reiterated his intention to meet Kim by the end of May.

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The building is close to the embassies of South Korea and the United States. North Korea Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho was supposed to leave the country Friday.

Sweden has played a neutral role between the USA and North Korea in the past.

He said the committee has chose to focus on the agendas regarding denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, easing military tensions between the two Koreas and development of inter-Korean ties.

"These talks were set up on a separate channel from either the U.S. -DPRK channels or the ROK-DPRK channels - it is wrong to assume that they are preparations for any summit", a North Korea expert with diplomatic experience told NK News.

On Thursday, the head of the U.S. Pacific Command, Admiral Harry Harris, cautioned the United States could not be overly optimistic about the outcome of any summit between Trump and Kim and must go into it with "eyes wide open".

An official at the South's defense ministry said authorities were aware of the Jane's report, which follows a similar one released on the 38 North website earlier this month that said a nearby reactor had also continued to show signs of operation.

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