A South Korean senior presidential official on Tuesday said Seoul believed the “greatest achievement” of today’s DPRK-U.S. summit was the two leaders developing confidence in each other as partners.
The comments followed the conclusion of a meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un at the Capella Hotel on Singapore’s Sentosa Island.
The summit was the first in history between a sitting U.S. President and a DPRK leader.
Following the talks, Second Deputy Chief of the Presidential National Security Office Nam Gwan-pyo said it was “significant” that the two leaders had learned to trust each other as partners to resolve issues through dialogue.
Nam said Seoul welcomed the news that President Trump had “sufficiently expressed” his trust in Kim.
He made the comments when asked if the absence of CVID (complete, verifiable, irreversible denuclearization) from a post-summit joint statement showed that the two sides had used Tuesday’s meeting as a foundation to improve trust.
Tuesday saw Trump describe Kim as “a very talented man” and say he had “developed a very special bond” with the DPRK leader.
“The greatest achievement of the summit was that Trump’s comments show his confidence in resolving any issues [with Kim],” Nam said in a brief meeting with a small group of reporters in Singapore.
Nan, a senior official at the South Korean presidential office, said he believed Pyongyang and Washington could “develop confidence in resolving any issues through follow-up measures.”
In response to Trump’s suggestion that an agreement to formally end the Korean War might take place soon, Nam said the Moon administration would not hasten the process and that there was “no timeframe” set for the process.
Speaking at a press conference following the summit, Trump said: “Now we can have hope that [the war] will soon end and it will, it will soon end.”
Regarding Trump’s surprise announcement that he would put a stop to regular joint ROK-U.S. military drills, Nam said the issue required discussion between the two countries.
“There is no single change in the suspension of the South-U.S. joint military exercise compared to the past,” Nam said.
“We’ve adhered to the position of considering [the halt] during the process of dialogue even in the past,” he added, asking the outlets to refer to a previous statement from the Blue House.
Tuesday saw the South Korean Presidential office say Seoul “needs to figure out the precise meaning and intention of Trump’s comments.”
“But we believe it is necessary to come up with various measures to improve dialogue more smoothly,” the Blue House said.
The presidential office said the measures were particularly needed at a time “when a variety of serious dialogues have been held between the North and the U.S. for the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula and the establishment of relations.”
South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Tuesday also released a statement on the DPRK-U.S. summit, describing the joint statement as “a historic event that has helped break down the last remaining Cold War legacy on earth.”
“It is a great victory achieved by both the United States and the two Koreas, and a huge step forward for people across the world who long for peace,” Moon said.
The ROK President said Seoul will support Pyongyang along the path to peace, vowing to “spare no effort in cooperating” with concerned parties “to ensure that the agreement can be implemented in its entirety.”
“This is just a beginning and there may be many difficulties ahead, but we will never go back to the past again and never give up on this bold journey,” Moon said. “History is a record of people who take action and rise to a challenge.”
Tuesday morning saw the South Korean President tell a cabinet meeting he “could hardly sleep last night” because of the Trump-Kim summit.
The U.S. President and Moon held talks on the phone Monday night and are set to hold another conversation at 2020 KST, the Blue House confirmed.
Edited by Oliver Hotham
Featured Image: Kevin Lim/THE STRAITS TIMES
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