S.Korea welcomes Kim's offer for dialogue

S.Korea welcomes Kim's offer for dialogue

S.Korea welcomes Kim's offer for dialogue

Moon's unification minister, Cho Myoung-gyon, proposed in a nationally televised news conference that the two Koreas meet January 9 at the shared border village of Panmunjom to discuss Olympic cooperation and how to improve overall ties. The North was subsequently hit with toughened United Nations sanctions, and Kim and President Donald Trump exchanged warlike rhetoric and crude personal insults against each other.

But Park did not refer to Kim's order to mass-produce nuclear warheads and ballistic missiles, as well as speeding up their deployment.

"This speech pokes at the fissure that has lain below the surface in U.S".

"President Moon needs a successful Olympics and the US drive to increase pressure fits poorly with the Southern agenda".

South Korea on Tuesday offered high-level talks with rival North Korea to find ways to cooperate on next month's Winter Olympics in the South. Seoul's quick proposal following a rare rapprochement overture from the North a day earlier offers the possibility of better ties after a year that saw a nuclear standoff increase fear of war on the Korean Peninsula.

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"We're actually closer in my view to a nuclear war with North Korea and in that region than we've ever been".

Even so, Trump has also floated the idea of friendship with Kim on occasion, and has called on him to "make a deal" on North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile programs. "That's not a basis on which the United States is prepared to engage", he said.

While this is the first time Kim Jong-un has alluded to having a physical means of launching his country's nuclear weapons in his office - most likely to predetermined targets in the Northeast Asia and the continental United States - the fundamental nuclear command-and-control message from North Korea remains unchanged since 2013.

Moon proposed Red Cross and military talks a year ago, but Pyongyang did not respond.

"We offered military talks in July and our offer still stands". Kim Jong-un, while acknowledging the "unprecedented" level of sanctions the country had endured in 2017, said that North Korea would have to improve its "ability to be self-reliant".

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Talks could provide a temporary thaw in strained inter-Korean ties, but conservative critics worry that they may only earn the North time to ideal its nuclear weapons.

Kim also reportedly highlighted the isolated state's economic achievements during the speech, and nodded towards trying to improve the country's standard of living.

The New Year's address is an annual event in the North and is watched closely for indications of the direction and priorities Kim may adopt in the year ahead.

Daniel Russel, the top USA diplomat for East Asia until last April and now at the Asia Society Policy Institute, said there was an argument to be made to encourage North Korea's Olympic participation but that it should not be taken too far.

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