North, South Korea hold working-level talks ahead of summit

ANI | Updated: Apr 05, 2018 17:48 IST

Seoul [South Korea], Apr 5 (ANI): The officials from North and South Korea on Thursday held working-level talks to discuss the logistics ahead of the inter-Korean summit slated to be held in the month-end.

The working-level talks were supposed to be held on Wednesday, but Pyongyang on Tuesday had asked Seoul to delay them to Thursday. The dialogue was held at the border village of Panmunjom on the South Korean side, located along the heavily guarded Demilitarised Zone (DMZ).

During the talks, the two sides discussed on security measures, protocol and live broadcasting and media coverage of the inter-Korean summit.

"The sides held serious and thorough discussions on ways to successfully hold the summit," Kwun Hyuk-ki, a Cheong Wa Dae (South Korean Presidential House) spokesman, was quoted by Yonhap news agency as saying.

Kwun was a part of the South Korean five-member delegation, which was led by Kim Sang-gyun, a senior director of the National Intelligence Service.

From the North Korean side, the six-member delegation was led by Kim Chang-son, an official from the country's state affairs commission, chaired by leader Kim Jong-un, according to Kwun.

The two sides have agreed to meet again soon to discuss the final preparations for the inter-Korean summit.

Meanwhile, separate officials from the two Koreas will meet on Saturday to discuss the establishment of a communication hotline between Kim and South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

The two Korean leaders are set to meet face-to-face for the very first time at the inter-Korean summit in Panmunjom on April 27, where they are expected to discuss on denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula as well as a peace plan, in an effort to improve the bilateral relations between the two countries.

This will be the first time ever that a North Korean leader would step on the South Korean soil ever since the 1950-53 Korean War ended.

The two Koreas remain technically at war, as the Korean War ended with an armistice and not a peace treaty.

The upcoming summit follows a flurry of dialogue and exchanges between the two Koreas around the Pyeongchang Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games in South Korea held in the last two months.

Moon's top security advisor, Chung Eui-yong, travelled to Pyongyang last month to meet Kim and to Washington D.C. and reached on agreements on the inter-Korean summit, as well as on a proposed US-North Korea summit.

US President Donald Trump accepted the invitation from Kim that he would meet the latter by May. The date and location of the proposed US-North Korea summit are yet to be decided.

There has been a pressing need for the denuclearisation of North Korea by Japan, the US, China and South Korea. (ANI)