World

North Korea had frank, candid talks with South's president: KCNA

North Korea had frank, candid talks with South's president: KCNA

Kim Yo-jong carried a bright blue folder as she entered the conference room at the Blue House, Seoul's presidential office, and some analysts speculated it could contain a letter from her brother.

Seoul made a standing offer to North Korea a year ago regarding another such reunion, details of which have yet to be hammered out between North and South Korea. They were whisked back and forth between Seoul and the Olympic towns of Pyeongchang and Gangneung.

Kim Yong Nam, the North's nominal head of state who was also at Saturday's meeting, said "even unexpected difficulties and ordeals could be surely overcome and the future of reunification brought earlier when having a firm will and taking courage and determination to usher in a new heyday of inter-Korean relations". Saturday's game ended in a crushing 8-0 loss to Switzerland.

One telling incident came early.

"We will fully cooperate with global efforts regarding sanctions against North Korea based on our stance for a denuclearised Korean peninsula and a peaceful solution (to the North Korea nuclear issue)", the statement said.

However, South Korea's main opposition party warned any talks between the two Koreas where the scrapping of North Korea's nuclear programme was not a precondition would only "benefit the enemy".

He said the Koreas should create an environment so that a summit could take place.

Moon has expressed hope the d├ętente could lead to a broader dialogue with the United States.




North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's sister, Kim Yo Jong, headed home Sunday after a whirlwind trip to the Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

South Korea's former leader Kim Dae-jung, who won a Nobel Prize for what was dubbed a "sunshine policy" with the North, held the first summit with Kim Jong Il in 2000 in Pyongyang.

By also sending a youthful, photogenic individual who would surely draw global attention at the Olympics, Kim might have also been trying to construct a fresher image of the country, particularly in face of USA efforts to use the Olympics as an occasion to highlight the North's brutal human rights record. "Moon should be aware that he has to urge denuclearisation to North Korea by himself, not depending on dialogue between the US and North Korea", an editorial in the Yomiuri Newspaper read.

Kim has captivated media attention and fascinated the public since her arrival on Friday. After Kim arrived at Incheon Airport and met with the Korean unification minister, Kim Yong Nam gestured for her to take the center seat at the table - leading many South Korean news outlets to conclude that she's essentially her brother's second in command.

"The fate of our nation must be determined by our own selves - we must not allow the repeat of unfortunate past history where our fate was determined with no regard to our opinions", Moon said in a speech to South Korean lawmakers in November.

Tensions on the Korean border have escalated over the past year as the North pursues its ambition of becoming a fully-fledged nuclear power.

South Korea may also need to persuade traditional allies the United States and Japan, which have raised concerns that the North is attempting to use its outreach as a release valve for worldwide pressure.


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