The U.S., China, Russia, and Japan all issued public statements of varying degrees of support on Friday in the aftermath of a historic inter-Korean summit between DPRK leader Kim Jong Un and ROK President Moon Jae-in earlier in the day.
The leaders of the two Koreas on Friday morning shared a handshake along the Military Demarcation Line (MDL) at the Panmunjom Peace Village to kick off the first inter-Korean summit in over ten years.
The meeting culminated in the release of a joint statement, which included a written intent to end the armistice agreement between the two countries and to sign a peace treaty – a move representing a symbolic end to close to 70 years of hostilities.
While Japan, Russia, and China all issued official statements via their respective foreign ministries, U.S. President Donald Trump took to social media to issue cautious support for the meeting.
“After a furious year of missile launches and Nuclear testing, a historic meeting between North and South Korea is now taking place. Good things are happening, but only time will tell!” Trump said on Twitter.
“KOREAN WAR TO END! The United States, and all of its GREAT people, should be very proud of what is now taking place in Korea!,” he added shortly after, in reference to the joint statement.
The two Koreas have agreed to purse three-party and four-party meetings with the U.S. and China “with a view to declaring an end to the War” this year – which will see the 65th anniversary of the armistice agreement.
Meanwhile, the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) commented on the summit during a scheduled foreign ministry briefing and also in a subsequent stand-alone statement accredited to spokesperson Lu Kang.
“The successful meeting between the leaders of the DPRK and the ROK today has reached a joint declaration on improving relations between the two sides, alleviating military tension on the Korean Peninsula, and promoting the realization of denuclearization and lasting peace on the Peninsula,” the statement read.
“The positive results achieved at this meeting are conducive to enhancing mutual reconciliation and cooperation, maintaining peace and stability on the peninsula, and promoting the political settlement of the peninsula issue. The Chinese side congratulates and welcomes this,” it added.
China hopes “parties concerned” would maintain the momentum for dialogue and jointly promote a political resolution to issues on the peninsula and denuclearization, it continued.
U.S. President Trump also thanked Chinese President Xi Jinping for working with him in exerting pressure on the DPRK in a third tweet on Friday.
The Russian foreign ministry also issued a stand-alone statement following the summit on Friday.
“We welcome the successful holding on April 27 of the meeting of the leaders of the two Korean states in Panmunjom,” it read.
“We regard it as a significant step by Seoul and Pyongyang to national reconciliation and the establishment of strong relationships of independent value.”
It also added that Russia is prepared to take part in trilateral development and economic projects involving the two Koreas in railway, electricity, gas, and other sectors.
The comment is a likely nod to a section in the inter-Korean joint-statement which included a commitment to achieve projects previously agreed to in the two countries’ 2007 October 4 Declaration.
“As a first step, the two sides agreed to adopt practical steps towards the connection and modernization of the railways and roads on the eastern transportation corridor as well as between Seoul and Sinuiju for their utilization,” the statement said.
Japan’s foreign ministry, however, cast a more skeptical tone: while the statement applauded “the South Korean government’s efforts to realize this summit” it focused primarily on the nuclear issue.
“Our nation confirms that President Moon and Chairperson Kim directly discussed issues such as on the denuclearization of North Korea for the first time and that Chairperson Kim showed his willingness on the denuclearization of North Korea on the documents,” it read. “These are positive moves toward a comprehensive solution of issues related to North Korea.”
“As a result of this summit and through the upcoming the U.S.-North Korea summit, we strongly hope North Korea will take concrete actions to dismantle all weapons of mass destruction including biological and chemical weapons and ballistic missiles in a complete, verifiable and irreversible disarmament (CVID) way,” it added.
It also said that Japan would continue to “collect and analyze” intelligence on North Korea’s actions in the meantime.
The joint statement released following the third inter-Korean summit was broad and symbolic, with reiterations of previous statements issued by both Koreas in the past as well as new commitments in the short term.
Following summits with Xi and now Moon, Kim is set to meet with Trump in either late May or early June.
Edited by Oliver Hotham
Featured image: Inter-Korean Summit Press Corps
Join the influential community of members who rely on NK News original news and in-depth reporting.
Subscribe to read the remaining 802 words of this article.