North Korea-South Korea Dialogue is Coming Soon!
North Korea and South Korea are set to hold official talks next week after Pyongyang finally accepted Seoul’s offer for dialogue.
That news made headlines around the world when North Korea sent a fax message to South Korea at 10:16 a.m. local time (8:16 p.m Thursday ET), informing the South that the North accepted the offer to initiate talks.
The South’s unification ministry spokesman Baik Tae-hyun said North Korea had sent its consent for the talks to be held on 9 January at the border truce village of Panmunjom.
January 9 will be first high-level contact to take place between the two countries in more than two years. The last time the rival Koreas engaged in official talks was in December 2015.
The Upcoming Dialogue
According to Baik, the person-to-person talks will cover high-level discussion on Pyeongchang Winter Olympics and the improvement of inter-Korean relations.
Aside from that, the two sides agreed to work on the details of the talks “through the exchange of documents.”
Baik told reporters that the representatives of the dialogue were still to be finalized.
North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un opened the way for talks with South Korea in his annual New Year’s Day speech in which he expressed his interest for the North’s possible participation in the Winter Olympics and called for the end of tensions on the Korean peninsula.
A Major Diplomatic Breakthrough
The announcement of talks has been widely regarded as a major diplomatic breakthrough. In fact, the much-awaited dialogue was hailed by the United States and China.
According to reports, President Donald Trump called potential talks between North and South Korea “a good thing” in his twitter account.
Trump tweeted, “With all of the failed “experts” weighing in, does anybody really believe that talks and dialogue would be going on between North and South Korea right now if I wasn’t firm, strong and willing to commit our total “might” against the North. Fools, but talks are a good thing!”
China’s foreign ministry hailed news of possible talks between the rival Koreas.
Spokesman Geng Shuang said at a regular briefing, “We welcome the recent positive turn of events in the peninsular situation.”
Geng also expressed hope “all relevant parties” would take advantage of the Games to “bring the issue back to the correct track of peaceful settlement through dialogue and consultation.”
South Korea Expresses Commitment To End Hostilities With North Korea
The South Korea has expressed its desire to end the hostilities with its neighbour. In fact, President Moon Jae-in said during the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, last year that he is amenable to opening a dialogue with the North Korean regime despite its “nuclear provocation.”
In fact, amid escalating tensions in Korean peninsula, South Korea has expressed its willingness to open talks with the North Korean regime on July 2017.
The move is considered by the South Korean government as a crucial step to end the long-running conflict between the two nations and for the realization of peace on the border.