Wednesday, 24 October, 2018

North and South Korea want to co-host the 2032 Olympics

As Korean leaders embrace launching key talks in Pyongyang the U.S. looks for concrete progress South Korean President Moon Jae-in left and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un meet Sept. 18 in Pyongyang
Lisa Bryan | 19 September, 2018, 20:41

"Kim Jong Un has agreed to allow nuclear inspections, subject to final negotiations, and to permanently dismantle a test site and launch pad in the presence of worldwide experts", Trump tweeted.

As part of the accord, North Korea committed to permanently close down the Tongchang-ri engine testing and missile launching site under the attendance of relevant experts, the South Korean President announced. As Inter-Korean exchanges pick up speed, a key goal for Moon will be to sell the rapid rapprochement to his own people, with many remaining sceptical of pandering to a brutal dictator.

About the recent meeting between Moon and Kim, the former's spokesman Yoon Young-chan said, "It's hard to say at this moment that the two leaders have reached any agreement".

But discussions over how to implement the vague commitments have since faltered.

Mr Moon also said Mr Kim would try to visit Seoul sometime this year.

Mr Moon and Mr Kim resumed their talks on Wednesday at around 10am (9am Singapore time), this time without any other attendees. "It's very much calmed down". The agreement stated that Kim would travel to Seoul "as soon as possible", something no North Korean leader has ever done.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un agreed to launch a joint bid for the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games at a summit in Pyongyang today.

President Moon stated his visit could take place within the year, barring unforeseen circumstances.


The leaders also announced a series of steps to deepen bilateral exchanges in the economy, culture and sport.

Donald Trump described the results of the summit as "very exciting" in a tweet, and Moon will meet Trump on 25 September in NY during the United Nations general assembly. Though it wasn't packaged that way for the domestic audience, Kim's meeting with Moon could just as easily be seen as a big message for Trump, one that was perfectly in keeping with what North Korea has been proposing since the Trump summit ended.

North Korea would also shut down its Dongchang-ri missile engine testing and launch facility and allow the process to be monitored by worldwide observers.

The agreement included commitments to the "permanent dismantlement" of North Korea's primary nuclear facility in Yongbyon and the allowing of global inspectors to observe the disassembly of an engine test site.

The Korean leaders' surprisingly substantive summit announcement is a huge step toward a durable peace on the Korean Peninsula - and a Nobel Peace Prize for Kim Jong Un and Moon Jae-in. The Trump administration has sought concessions like a detailed inventory of North Korea's weapons and inspections, as any peace declaration will bolster arguments for easing sanctions and scaling back the US military presence in South Korea.

One of the major breakthroughs of the Pyongyang summit was the consent given by the North to allow global inspectors to document a "permanent dismantlement" of its key missile facilities. Such a trip would be the first by any North Korean leader, another dramatic moment in the flurry of diplomacy around the North's nuclear weapons program in recent months.

"Kim Jong Un has agreed to allow Nuclear inspections, subject to final negotiations, and to permanently dismantle a test site and launch pad in the presence of global experts".

At the summit, the two Koreas agreed to begin construction to reconnect railways and roads linking the countries within this year.

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