South Korean Moon and North Kim exchanged letters ahead of Biden summit – newspaper



SEOUL, July 2 (Reuters) – South Korean President Moon Jae-in exchanged letters exploring the prospects for a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un ahead of his own meeting in May with US President Joe Biden, South Korean newspaper JoongAng Ilbo reported on Friday. .

Moon had hoped to use the meeting with Biden as a chance to revive stalled talks with Kim and urge Washington to deal with the issue with more urgency. Read more

He sent a letter to Kim to explore ways to hold a summit, including online, if possible, as he publicly proposed in January, given the coronavirus pandemic, the newspaper said, citing a source. diplomatic unidentified.

However, he did not say how Kim responded.

Moon’s office did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

“I understand the two leaders exchanged letters around the South Korea-US summit,” the source said. “I heard that through the letters the two leaders were discussing how to hold a summit such as a video conference.”

Moon and Biden have expressed their willingness to engage with North Korea after the May meeting. Read more

But Biden has shown no intention of easing sanctions, in line with Pyongyang’s long-standing demand. He said he had “no illusions” about how difficult it would be to get Kim to give up nuclear weapons.

Denuclearization talks between North Korea and the United States have been on hold since the failure of Kim’s second summit in 2019 with Biden’s predecessor, Donald Trump. This led to the deterioration of inter-Korean relations, with Moon having offered to play a role of mediator.

North Korea is constantly criticizing and ridiculing Moon and his government, and last year it blew up a cross-border liaison office built on its territory.

Reporting by Hyonhee Shin; Editing by Clarence Fernandez

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