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U.S., S. Korea in close contact over N. Korea: State Department

All News 23:37 August 13, 2018

WASHINGTON, Aug. 13 (Yonhap) -- The United States and South Korea are in close contact over their joint response to North Korea, the State Department said Monday after the Koreas announced plans for a third summit next month.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will meet in Pyongyang in September in line with an agreement reached at their first summit in April, the two sides said after high-level talks Monday.

North Korea's chief delegate, Ri Son-gwon, hinted that the exact date was decided but being withheld.

"We are in close contact with the Republic of Korea about our unified response to North Korea," a State Department spokesperson said in response to a Yonhap query. "As President Moon stated, 'The improvement of relations between North and South Korea cannot advance separately from resolving North Korea's nuclear program.'"

Plans for the new summit come as progress appears slow on dismantling North Korea's nuclear weapons program, a commitment Kim made at his summits with both Moon and U.S. President Donald Trump in June.

Washington is pressing Pyongyang to demonstrate its commitment to denuclearizing, such as by declaring a full inventory of its nuclear arsenal. The North has demanded that the U.S. implement its side of their Singapore summit agreement through confidence-building measures, including the declaration of a formal end to the 1950-53 Korean War.


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