Offbeat North Korea’s Sudden Shift Puts South’s Leader on the Spot

15:57  17 may  2018
15:57  17 may  2018 Source:   nytimes.com

Trump says he will meet with North Korea's Kim on June 12 in Singapore

  Trump says he will meet with North Korea's Kim on June 12 in Singapore <p>The two leaders are expected to discuss North Korea’s nuclear weapons development and testing program.</p>“The highly anticipated meeting between Kim Jong Un and myself will take place in Singapore on June 12th. We will both try to make it a very special moment for World Peace!” Trump said on Twitter.

Is North Korea sincere about continuing the rare momentum for dialogue… and finally sitting down with the U. S .? North Korean leader Kim Jong-un told South Experts think such a drastic and sudden shift in stance… has occured because Pyongyang does not wish to put the brakes on the recent

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has ignored recent peace overtures from Seoul but he' s due on Tuesday to hold a formal dialogue with his southern neighbor for the first time in more than two years. The sudden interest in talks may have something to do with Pyongyang' s nuclear arsenal.

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SEOUL, South Korea — A week ago, things could not be going better for President Moon Jae-in of South Korea. He was successfully arranging a meeting between North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-un, and President Trump. His approval ratings at home were soaring. The tone had changed so much that Mr. Trump had even called Mr. Kim “very honorable.”

Now, the matchmaking role that has defined Mr. Moon’s presidency is suddenly in doubt.

Pompeo: U.S. to help North Korea economy if it gives up nukes

  Pompeo: U.S. to help North Korea economy if it gives up nukes <p>Secretary of State Mike Pompeo offered economic help Friday to impoverished North Korea if it gives up its nuclear weapons, as the two countries prepare for an historic summit between President Donald Trump and leader Kim Jong Un.</p>WASHINGTON — Secretary of State Mike Pompeo offered economic help Friday to impoverished North Korea if it gives up its nuclear weapons, as the two countries prepare for an historic summit between President Donald Trump and leader Kim Jong Un.

Now, as Mr. Trump and the leader of North Korea , Kim Jong-un, exchange increasingly fiery words over the North ’ s nuclear weapons program, Mr. Abe’ s relationship with the president is being tested.

A brief history of North Korea ' s unprovoked aggression toward South Korea , and the ways we can stop them North Korea ’ s Recent History of Random, Sudden , Violent Provocations. Put aside the regime’ s blustery threats; look at what the North Korean government and its military actually does

After months of unusual bonhomie, North Korea on Wednesday withdrew from talks with South Korea and threatened to cancel the planned June 12 summit meeting between Mr. Kim and Mr. Trump, which Mr. Moon’s aides have spent months trying to set up.

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For Mr. Moon, the North’s reversal brought home the difficulties in playing matchmaker between his country’s most fearsome foe and its most important ally, both countries run by an impulsive and often unpredictable leader.

It shows the extraordinarily difficult challenge that Mr. Moon confronts. He faces skepticism from both Pyongyang and Washington that he can be an honest broker. North Korea still considers South Korea an American stooge. In the United States, conservatives who have the president’s ear worry that progressive South Korean leaders like Mr. Moon will ease sanctions, breaking ranks with Washington in their eagerness to reconcile with the North.

North Korea to dismantle nuclear test site May 23-25: state media

  North Korea to dismantle nuclear test site May 23-25: state media North Korea has scheduled the dismantlement of its nuclear test site for sometime between May 23 and 25 depending on weather conditions in order to uphold its pledge to discontinue nuclear tests, state media said on Saturday. The country's central news agency said the dismantlement of the nuclear test ground would involve collapsing all of its tunnels with explosions, blocking its entrances and removing all observation facilities, research buildings and security posts.Journalists from other countries, including the United States and South Korea, will be invited to cover the event.

A massive hack of South Korean military computers appears to have compromised a number of secret operational details.

North Korea demanded Friday that South Korea cancel all joint military drills with the U. S . and stop the deployment of American military assets to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un made similar demands in his New Year’ s address, and the North is expected to make the same requests at talks next week.

“A matchmaker can succeed when boy and girl like each other,” said Moon Seong-mook, a senior analyst at the Korea Research Institute for National Strategy in Seoul. “But the United States and North Korea have very different ideas on how to achieve denuclearization.”

It remains unclear whether the North’s sudden shift in attitude signaled a return to brinkmanship or mere posturing before the summit meeting, which is slated to take place in Singapore.

While most South Koreans support Mr. Moon’s intermediary role, North Korea’s actions on Wednesday give political ammunition to his conservative enemies, who call him a naïve amateur who has fallen for Pyongyang’s trap of “false peace.” They fear that Mr. Moon will not denuclearize the North, but will weaken Seoul’s alliance with Washington.

North Korea’s reversal has already dampened some of the optimism that pervaded South Korea after Mr. Moon’s dramatic meeting with Mr. Kim on the inter-Korean border on April 27. His party had been hoping to benefit politically from the Singapore meeting, which would take place a day before elections of mayors and provincial governors in South Korea. Mr. Moon’s North Korea diplomacy has loomed large over the contests.

Report: Buildings being dismantled at NK nuke test site

  Report: Buildings being dismantled at NK nuke test site U.S. researchers say recent satellite imagery shows that North Korea has begun dismantling facilities at its nuclear test site.An analysis Monday by the 38 North website says commercial imagery taken last week shows that several operational support buildings have been razed and rails for mining carts have apparently been removed.North Korea says it will dismantle its Punggye-ri test site between May 23 and 25 in the presence of local and international media. The site has been used for each of its six underground nuclear test explosions.South Korea's president on Monday welcomed the announcement as the beginning of North Korea's nuclear disarmament. It comes ahead of a historic U.

South Korea ' s election could unnerve markets if the country' s new leader attempts to change the current strategy in restraining North Korea . However, any shift away from THAAD could upset Washington, which has been putting concerted effort into bringing more troops and personnel in and

And South Korean business leaders are meeting with Xi in force on 4 July, investing heavily in Northeast China Pyongyang also appears to be attempting some sort of crude quid pro quo by all of a sudden I think The Guardian is putting too much thought into this trip in relations to North Korea .

Mr. Moon’s government vowed on Thursday to “step up a mediator’s role,” urging North Korea and the United States to “respect each other,” and “think in the other’s shoes” despite occasional setbacks.

“The situation we have is part of the long and hard process of creating the same painting,” said Mr. Moon’s spokesman, Yoon Young-chan.

North Korea and the United States have the same name for that painting: a “nuclear-free Korean Peninsula.” But they have differed sharply on the best way to complete it.

The Trump administration, particularly the national security adviser, John R. Bolton, wants North Korea to dismantle its nuclear program as soon as possible. It says that only when denuclearization has become irreversible will the United States ease sanctions and economically reward the North.

But North Korea says it will not bargain away its nuclear weapons for the sake of its economic future. Mr. Kim insists that he will take only “phased” steps toward denuclearization and that Washington must match each of them with “synchronized” measures to satisfy North Korea’s demands for security guarantees, which include normalized ties and a peace treaty with the United States, as well as the lifting of sanctions.

North Korea calls South Korea 'ignorant, incompetent' in meltdown over days-old military drills

  North Korea calls South Korea 'ignorant, incompetent' in meltdown over days-old military drills <p>Ri Son Gwon, the top North Korean negotiator, slammed South Korea for participating in military drills with the U.S.</p>Ri Son Gwon, the North Korean negotiator, slammed South Korea for participating in military drills with the U.S., following up a series of statements on Tuesday when Pyongyang canceled talks with Seoul and threatened to cancel a planned summit with President Donald Trump.

China ‘shoots down incoming missiles’ in ‘ sudden attack’ close to North Korea . North Korean leader Kim Jong Un guides a target-striking contest of the special operation forces of the Korean People' s Army to occupy islands.

As North Korean leader Kim Jong Un flaunts his nation’ s strides in missile development, the U. S . government for the past six months has covertly begun laying the groundwork for possible cyberattacks on North Korea in countries including South Korea and Japan.

“There is a huge gap between the North and the United States over denuclearization,” said Lee Seong-hyon, a research fellow at the Sejong Institute in South Korea. “There should be a lot of soul-searching going on in Seoul over whether it has been a mediator and communicator trusted by both sides.”

Mr. Moon has repeatedly argued that Mr. Kim would be willing to trade away his nuclear weapons for the right incentives. He called Mr. Kim “open-minded,” “frank” and “courteous.”

“Through many hours of frank and serious discussions with Chairman Kim, I could again and again confirm his willingness for complete denuclearization,” Mr. Moon said last week.

North Korea calls South Korea 'ignorant, incompetent' in meltdown over days-old military drills

  North Korea calls South Korea 'ignorant, incompetent' in meltdown over days-old military drills <p>Ri Son Gwon, the top North Korean negotiator, slammed South Korea for participating in military drills with the U.S.</p>Ri Son Gwon, the North Korean negotiator, slammed South Korea for participating in military drills with the U.S., following up a series of statements on Tuesday when Pyongyang canceled talks with Seoul and threatened to cancel a planned summit with President Donald Trump.

The US and North Korea stand on the verge of igniting a nuclear war after provocations from both sides. Leader of the Hermit Kingdom Kim has threatened to launch a nuclear missile every week, and attempted to launch a mid-range missile on Sunday.

This represents a significant shift for Moon Jae-in, who was elected president just two months ago and will be welcomed in Washington, where the Trump administration has been growing frustrated with South Korea ’ s heel-dragging. The catalyst for the sudden change was North Korea ’ s second launch

His government hopes that North Korea and the United States can meet each other halfway by exchanging denuclearization with security guarantees in a “phased” manner, as the North demands, while carrying out the deal quickly, as Washington wants — perhaps before the end of Mr. Trump’s term in early 2021.

South Korean officials are confident that such a deal is possible. They say that Mr. Kim is desperate to rebuild his nation’s economy and knows that he cannot do so without resolving the nuclear crisis, and that Mr. Trump is eager to make a deal before the midterm elections in November.

But as Mr. Moon acknowledged, “the devil will be in the details” — particularly who should make the first move and how to verify that promises are kept.

When China’s premier, Li Keqiang, met Mr. Moon in Tokyo last week, Mr. Li warned that North Korea thought it was doing its part to show its intention to denuclearize — by unilaterally announcing a moratorium on nuclear and missile tests and by inviting outsiders to monitor the shutdown of its nuclear test site. And North Korea was “waiting for a corresponding feedback from the United States,” Mr. Li was quoted as saying by South Korean officials.

Instead, North Korea saw the United States and South Korea pressing ahead with their annual military exercises. Mr. Bolton also called for the removal of not only nuclear arms but also chemical and biological weapons from North Korea.

This week, North Korea pushed back with its threat to cancel the summit meeting with Mr. Trump.

The developments showed how delicate Mr. Moon’s task is in bringing Mr. Trump and Mr. Kim together — and getting them to see eye to eye.

If Mr. Kim does not cooperate, Mr. Bolton has warned it could be a “pretty short meeting” in Singapore.

“Then we will see the crisis rapidly rising on the Korean Peninsula,” said Lee Byong-chul, a senior fellow at the Institute for Peace and Cooperation in Seoul. “The mediating role by South Korea and China has become more urgent than ever.”

South Korean president met N.Korea's Kim Jong Un Saturday-Seoul .
South Korean President Moon Jae-in met North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Saturday to discuss Kim's possible upcoming summit with U.S. President Donald Trump, the South said, the second inter-Korean summit in as many months. Moon and Kim met just north of the heavily militarized border in the afternoon to exchange views to pave way for a summit between North Korea and the United States, South Korea's presidential office said.Moon will announce the outcome of his two-hour meeting with Kim on Sunday morning, officials aid.

Source: http://us.pressfrom.com/news/offbeat/-145730-north-korea-s-sudden-shift-puts-south-s-leader-on-the-spot/

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