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Preparations Intensifying 15 Days Ahead of Inter-Korean Summit

Anchor: With 15 days to go until a rare summit between the two Koreas, President Moon Jae-in met with an advisory group comprised of senior figures who were involved in inter-Korean summits under previous governments. Moon's national security adviser is in Washington to meet with his counterpart to coordinate their countries' summits with the North.

Kim In-kyung has this report.

Report: Preparations for historic summits between the two Koreas and the North and the U.S. are becoming more urgent. With just 15 days to go until President Moon Jae-in meets with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, Moon met with an advisory group while his national security adviser is in Washington to meet his counterpart.

Moon held a luncheon at the presidential office on Thursday to seek the advice of senior figures who were involved in the inter-Korean summits in 2000 and 2007 under the former governments of Kim Dae-jung and Roh Moo-hyun.

Speaking to the group, Moon said that inter-Korean relations cannot be resolved solely by the two Koreas and must be preceded by a denuclearization agreement between Washington and Pyongyang.

He added that South Korea is tasked with holding a successful summit with the North so that it leads to successful talks between Pyongyang and Washington, calling both tasks challenging.

He said the two summits will be opportunities that will be hard pressed to come by again and vowed to take the opportunity at hand to establish complete denuclearization and permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula.

He said the current situation on the peninsula is extremely grave, adding that military tension has escalated over the past decade and that the North's nuclear and missile programs have advanced to a level that can threaten the United States.

From Thursday, the presidential office is operating a situation room under the inter-Korean summit preparatory committee to check and monitor preparations by related ministries on a daily basis.

Meanwhile, National Security Adviser Chung Eui-yong made a surprise visit to Washington on Wednesday to coordinate and exchange views with his U.S. counterpart John Bolton. In their meeting set for Thursday, the first since the U.S. national security adviser took office, the two officials are expected to establish a hotline between them ahead of the upcoming summits.

The South Korean Embassy in Washington and the U.S. State Department have already

agreed to hold regular meetings to prepare for their leaders' summits with North Korea.

Japanese national security adviser Shotaro Yachi is also in Washington, reportedly to meet with Bolton ahead of a U.S.-Japan summit next week, which is expected to address the North Korea issue.

Kim In-kyung, KBS World Radio News.

Source: KBS World Radio


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