4 days left: historic inter-Korean summit looming

Apr 23, 2018, 02:53 pm

print page small font big font

facebook share

tweet share

A glass showing a map of the border area between North and South Koreas at the Imjingak Pavilion near the Panmunjom./ Source: Yonhap News

By AsiaToday reporter Joo Sung-sik

With only a few days to go before this week's historic inter-Korean summit, which could lead to the path of denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and establishment of a permanent peace, many are optimistic about the summit as South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un have continuously expressed their desire to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula.

Besides, hopes for peace settlement on the Korean Peninsula through denuclearization are higher than ever as North Korea declared Friday it will discontinue nuclear test and inter-continental ballistic rocket test-fire and dismantle its Punggye-ri nuclear test site. The possibility of the transition to peace regime through the declaration of the end of war announced by U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to become visible through the inter-Korean summit.

President Moon held a final preparatory meeting for the inter-Korean summit with Presidential Chief of Staff Im Jong-seok and National Security Adviser Chung Eui-yong on Sunday, according to the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae. As Moon has been carefully handling the situation around the Korean Peninsula over the past few months through the PyeongChang Olympics and the dispatch of special envoys to North Korea saying that the summit will be an "opportunity that is unlikely to happen again", the meeting indicates Moon's cautious attitude.

"The inter-Korean summit will represent an opportunity that is unlikely to happen again, a chance to move toward a path of complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, establishment of a permanent peace regime, and sustainable development of inter-Korean relations," Moon had said in a meeting with a group of veteran advisors including Korea Peace Forum emeritus chairman Lim Dong-won on Apr. 12.

President Moon has shown confidence in Kim's commitment to denuclearization as if he predicted the North's declaration of halting its nuclear tests. "North Korea has expressed its desire for complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and is demonstrating us its active will to talk," Moon said in a meeting with CEOs of local media outlets Thursday at Cheong Wa Dae.

The prospects for the upcoming North Korea-U.S. summit talks are also hopeful. CIA director and U.S. secretary of state nominee Mike Pompeo met Kim last month in North Korea and confirmed Kim's will to denuclearize. U.S. President Donald Trump also showed optimism, saying a "good relationship was formed." This indicates that the possibility of declaring the end of the armistice regime to build a permanent peace regime that Trump announced in his summit meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is expected to become visible in the upcoming inter-Korean summit.

In this amicable atmosphere, the two Koreas will make a final check for the success of the summit for the next four days. South and North Koreas will hold a final meeting of working-level officials to discuss security, protocol and press coverage issues on Monday in Tongilgak, on the northern side of the truce village of Panmunjom. 
#inter-Korean summit #peace deal #Moon Jae-in 
Copyright by Asiatoday