S. Korea, N. Korea, U.S., attempt to break stalemate

Jun 13, 2019, 09:28 am

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President Moon Jae-in delivers a speech in Oslo, Norway on Wednesday./ Source: Yonhap News

By AsiaToday reporter Lee Seok-jong 

Leaders of the two Koreas and the United States exchanged their messages on the first anniversary of the historic summit between North Korea and the United States on Wednesday by sending a handwritten letter, expressing their condolences, and delivering a speech, raising hopes of resuming dialogue on denuclearization.

President Moon Jae-in stressed the trust and willingness for dialogue among the two Koreas and the United States during his speech in Oslo. U.S. President Donald Trump revealed that he received a handwritten letter from North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, raising the possibility of resuming dialogue with the North. Chairman Kim delivered a condolence message and flowers via his younger sister Kim Yo-jong for former first lady Lee Hee-ho who died recently, expressing his intention not to spoil the mood. 

In his keynote address during the Oslo Forum, Moon stressed the need for increased mutual understanding and trust for the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and the progress of the peace regime. 

"Today marks the first anniversary of the first North Korea-United States summit. One year ago, the leaders of the two sides met for the first time ever, in Singapore. They reached an ageement on the overriding principles of the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, new North Korea-U.S. relations and a peace regime on the Korean Peninsula," Moon said. 

"Now that agreement is moving forward. Talks appear in a stalemate since the second North Korea-United States summit, but that is because we need some time to understand each other thoroughly. It is the process of thawing out hostile feelings that have persisted for the last 70 years," the president said.

"What we need now is not a new vision or proclamation, but the deepening of mutual understanding and trust. With this as a foundation, we have to strengthen the will for dialogue further," Moon said. 

"Even after the second North Korea-United States summit, President Trump and Chairman Kim are still expressing the trust on each other and their firm resolve towards further dialogue. The international community is providing consistent support for the realization of peace through dialogue, and this serves as great strength for overcoming the current impasse," he said.

Ahead of Moon's speech, Trump told reporters at the White House on Tuesday (local time) that he received a "beautiful letter" from North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, raising hopes for progress in the denuclearization talks.

In particular, Kim Jong-un sent his sister to the border village of Panmunjom to deliver a wreath and a letter of condolence after the death of former first lady Lee Hee-ho in order to avoid spoiling the mood of dialogue with South Korea and the United States. As South Korea's National Security Office Director Chung Eui-yong and Vice Unification Minister Suh Hoon met with Kim Yo-jong, it seems that there was meaningful dialogue for inter-Korean relations, beyond the delivery of a wreath. 

As a result, many speculate that Trump's South Korea visit following the G20 summit in neighboring Japan might lead to either  a new inter-Korean summit or a trilateral summit among the two Koreas and the United States.

#stalemate #Moon Jae-in #Oslo #Trump #wreath 
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