North Korea could propose military restrictions with USA over weekend

Glen Norman
July 15, 2018

The letter, which Trump referred to as a "very nice note" in a tweet, highlights Jong Un's intention to honour the agreement signed between the two, exactly a month ago in Singapore.

-North Korea talks. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had visited North Korea last week in a bid to make progress toward denuclearization, a stated goal for USA negotiators.

The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the United States held talks Sunday to discuss the repatriation of USA soldiers' remains during the 1950-1953 Korean War, Yonhap news agency said citing unnamed sources.

In another sign that relations have strained since Kim sent the letter, CNN reported that North Korean officials failed to show up for a meeting with their US counterparts in the demilitarized zone Thursday.

Trump and Kim agreed to work towards the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula in June, but did not give any specifics on how they planned to do so. Pyongyang has asked the UN Command Armistice Commission to upgrade the talks to a higher level to include a US general, South Korea's foreign ministry said.

Pompeo had said a Pentagon team would meet with the North's officials on or around Thursday at the inter-Korea border to discuss the repatriation.

Lee Do-hoon, South Korea's chief nuclear envoy, provided the update to reporters in Washington after holding a series of meetings with US officials handling the negotiations.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Friday urged North Korea and the United States to move forward on a pact to end Pyongyang's nuclear program, as a lack of firm steps by the North raised questions about its commitment to its pledge.

Kim said he hoped the process between the two sides would lead to "practical actions" in the future - though he offered no specifics - and that there would be a second meeting between the two leaders.

The president said in a tweet Thursday - exactly one month after his summit with Kim in Singapore - that "great progress" was being made in negotiations.

Pompeo, Trump's point person for all things North Korea, conceded Washington and Pyongyang "still have a long ways to go".

US forces brought some 100 wooden coffins into the DMZ last month, which will be used to transport the remains, according to Yonhap.

Seoul's Foreign Ministry says the North requested talks at a higher level.

"I think the United States will make a decision in July, hold consultations in August and declare an end to the Korean War in September", said Mr Hong Min, a senior researcher at the Korea Institute for National Unification.

But North Korea's delegation failed show up.

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