KOREA | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


KOREA

Nov 13 13:02

North Korea Warns US-South Korea Drills Violate Agreement

While there has been a lot of progress in recent months on improving ties on the Korean Peninsula, North Korea’s state media warned on Monday that the resumption of military drills between the US and South Korea violated a recent agreement.

On September 19, North and South Korea signed an agreement which was intended to bar either side from taking any action that might be perceived as hostile. This was intended to include military exercises with the US.

The US wasn’t a party to this deal, which was between the Koreas. They have, however, gone out of their way to reduce the number of wargames being conducted in South Korea. As tensions have risen recently, however, the US may be looking to conduct more such exercises.

South Korea downplayed the complaints, not directly denying that they weren’t violating the agreement, but rather insisting that the exercises was very small.and purely defensive.

Nov 13 13:01

PROBABLE BEX - New Study: North Korea Has At Least 13 Secret Ballistic Missile Sites

A new study is alleging that the North Korean regime is operating at least 13 secret ballistic missile sites. This could be a sign that Kim Jong-Un is not quite ready to de-nuclearize despite the decreased rhetoric in recent months.

Totalitarian North Korea is not winding down the country’s nuclear program despite public promises made to the Trump administration. According to a report by USA Today, new research, conducted by the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Security, has identified 13 of an estimated 20 North Korean missile operating bases that Kim’s regime has not declared.

Nov 13 08:42

Pence, Abe reaffirm need to keep N. Korea sanctions, discuss trade talks

US Vice-President Mike Pence and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Tuesday reaffirmed the need to keep sanctions on North Korea to achieve its denuclearization. Washington will continue to put diplomatic and economic pressure on North Korea and urged all Indo-Pacific nations to maintain pressure and sanctions until the complete denuclearization of North Korea is achieved, Pence said in Tokyo on Tuesday.

Nov 12 12:25

By The Way, The Koreas Just Dismantled 22 Guard Posts On The DMZ

I realize everyone has a lot on their plate with domestic news in the wake of the midterms, particularly since the counting isn’t even over yet. But there have been some important developments abroad which are worth keeping an eye on. One of these popped up this weekend with an announcement from South Korea that they’ve reached one of the early milestones in their tentative rapprochement with the North. Moon Jae-in and Kim Jong-un have revealed that each side has “disarmed” and essentially abandoned eleven of the guard posts along the DMZ. This has some observers urging caution on the part of the South, but it still represents progresses toward peace.

Nov 11 09:19

Stalled talks with North Korea indicate larger unravelling of progress

The cancelation of a highly anticipated meeting between Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and North Korean officials has experts worried the quest for Pyongyang’s denuclearization is quietly unraveling.

Progress on North Korea's denuclearization has stalled in the five months since President Trump and Kim Jong Un’s meeting in June in Singapore as both sides are unwilling to make concessions.

The issue has largely been unnoticed leading up to Tuesday’s midterm elections.

“If no one is willing to make the first major concession and talks collapse, we could be on a path that takes us back to the days of fire and fury and name calling. And that is a path that could take us once again to the brink of nuclear war,” said Harry Kazianis, director of defense studies at the Center for the National Interest.

“We must avoid that at all costs.”

Nov 09 10:58

Not Going to Let it Happen': Haley Vows to Stop Russia Lifting DPRK Sanctions

US Envoy to the United Nations Nikki Haley said Thursday that Moscow wants to lift banking sanctions on North Korea put in place to try to curb Pyongyang's nuclear program, but the United States would not let that happen, Reuters reported.

"What they're looking for is to lift banking restrictions… So now we know what their agenda is, we know exactly why they're trying to do it and we're not going to let it happen," Haley said after a closed-door security council meeting on North Korea sanctions, as quoted by Reuters. Russia's envoy was also in attendance at the meeting.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Now, I have to wonder; just what is Ambassador Haley prepared to do to prevent this (which, BTW, would be a very logical thing for the US to do, to express good faith to Kim Jung Un), invade Russia and North Korea all by herself?!?

Apply more sanctions to both countries?!?

The bag of tricks she has, has already been pretty much emptied, due to a certain, collective tone-deafness by those in the Bowels of Power in DC with regard to both North Korea and Russia.

And as a working choral conductor, I cannot begin to tell you how much I HATE tone-dearness!!

Nov 08 12:37

North Korea 'really angry' at US as tensions rise

North Korea is getting increasingly angry at the US, as talks are deadlocked and tensions between the two countries are on the rise, a source familiar with the discussions told CNN.

US and foreign sources close to the talks paint a picture that's starkly different from the image President Donald Trump sought to convey Wednesday, when he told reporters the administration is "very happy with how it's going with North Korea. We think it's going fine."

Trump had been asked about the administration's announcement, in the middle of the night as Tuesday's midterm elections results were coming in, that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's Thursday meeting with a key aide to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un had been postponed.

Nov 08 10:20

WW3 WARNING: North Korea RAGING at US as tensions peak over cancelled meetings

TENSIONS between North Korea and the US are rising against a backdrop of deadlocked peace talks and growing anger in Pyongyang.

Strained relations soured further when US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pulled out of talks with North Korean officials this week after Pyongyang complained Washington had not made any concessions in return for the moves it claims to have taken towards denuclearisation.

Nov 07 14:24

Pompeo’s meeting with North Korean counterpart called off at last minute

The State Department on Wednesday announced a planned meeting with a top North Korean envoy had been scrubbed, even as President Trump said he hoped to hold a second summit with Kim Jong Un “early next year.”

Trump’s remarks followed a surprise notice by the State Department that a scheduled meeting between Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his counterpart in New York had been called off at the last minute, suggesting a growing rift between Washington and Pyongyang over the denuclearization process and the right time to lift sanctions.

Nov 07 12:34

Dumping the dollar: Iran & South Korea agree cross-currency trade

South Korea and Iran have agreed to switch to national currencies in trade exchanges as the sides aim to strengthen relations despite the US sanctions on Tehran.

The agreement is of great importance to both countries, Yonhap News Agency reported, explaining that the deal indicated Korea’s concerns about relations with Iran.

Nov 07 10:32

Dumping the dollar: Iran & South Korea agree cross-currency trade

South Korea and Iran have agreed to switch to national currencies in trade exchanges as the sides aim to strengthen relations despite the US sanctions on Tehran.

The agreement is of great importance to both countries, Yonhap News Agency reported, explaining that the deal indicated Korea’s concerns about relations with Iran.

The countries also agreed to make payments and settle their financial and banking accounts using the South Korean national currency, the won. That will allow South Korean and Iranian companies to continue their extensive exchanges in various fields.

Nov 06 10:51

US Must Alter Military Posture if North Korea Talks Succeed - Dunford

The United States must change its military posture on the Korean peninsula as talks to denuclearize North Korea progress, US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Joseph Dunford said during remarks at Duke University.

"The more successful we are in the diplomatic track, the more uncomfortable we will be in the military space," Dunford said on Monday. "Over time this negotiation will take a form where we're going to have to start making some changes to the military posture on the peninsula."

Dunford highlighted that although North Korea's testing and nuclear development has ceased, its missile and nuclear capabilities have not changed.

Nov 06 09:00

North Korea issues nuclear threat ahead of high-level talks with US

As the United States and North Korea prepare for another round of high-level talks this week, Pyongyang's increasingly heated rhetoric has analysts worried that the stalemate between the two sides could lead to a breakdown in negotiations.

An official with North Korea's Foreign Ministry issued a veiled threat Friday, warning that Pyongyang could restart "building up nuclear forces" if the US does not ease the crippling sanctions levied on North Korea.

Nov 05 10:01

U.S., South Korea resume low-key military drills ahead of talks with North Korea

The United States and South Korea will begin small-scale military drills on Monday just days ahead of U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo meeting with a North Korea official to discuss denuclearization and plans for a second summit between the two countries.

Nov 05 08:57

NORTH KOREA WARNS THEY’LL RETURN TO NUKE DEVELOPMENT IF SANCTIONS AREN’T LIFTED

Over the weekend, North Korea issued a statement warning that they will “seriously consider” returning to the development on nuclear weapons if the US continues to refuse to ease economic sanctions against them.

Since North Korea halted nuclear testing and has made substantial diplomatic progress, many nations have advocated for some early sanctions relief, but so far every such effort has been blocked by the US. North Korea is growing increasingly impatient with that, and with the Trump Administration refusing to reach a peace treaty with them.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo dismissed the threats, and reiterated that the US has no intention of allowing any sanctions relief until America achieves its “ultimate objective.” Though this is meant to be understood as nuclear disarmament, some in North Korea have been increasingly vocal in fearing that the US will never deliver on anything once they’ve already gotten what they want.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF, in fact, President Trump is the negotiator he claims to be, then this arbitrary one-sidedness must be softened.

Otherwise, he risks losing every possible future accommodation North Korea may be willing to give.

IF he slips back into a war footing with North Korea, he will have wasted a very precious opportunity to get North Korea back into the community of nations which have shunned it, at all levels, for so many years, at the US's edict.

Nov 04 07:42

North Korea Warns Of Return To Nuclear Policy

Pyongyang expresses frustration over the slow progress of the lifting of sanctions while US insists on denuclearisation.

North Korea has warned the United States it will "seriously" consider returning to a state policy aimed at building nuclear weapons if Washington does not end tough economic sanctions against the impoverished regime.

In a statement issued late on Friday, the North's foreign ministry said Pyongyang could revert to its former policy if the US did not change its stance over sanctions.

"The word 'byungjin' may appear again and the change of the line could be seriously reconsidered," said the statement carried by the official KCNA news agency.

>>>

Nov 02 08:48

2 Koreas to seek talks with IOC on joint 2032 Olympics bid – Seoul

The two Koreas on Friday agreed to seek talks with the International Olympics Committee (IOC) to discuss a joint bid for the 2032 Summer Games, according to officials in Seoul. As cross-border reconciliation gathers pace, the neighbors will send a letter to the IOC expressing an intention to jointly host the Games, said a joint statement released by Seoul. It followed talks held by sports officials from both sides of the border on Friday.

Oct 31 09:33

North Korea is reportedly preparing nuclear and missile sites for international inspectors

South Korea's spy agency has observed preparations by North Korea for international inspections at several of its nuclear and missile test sites, the Yonhap news agency said on Wednesday, citing a South Korean lawmaker.

Kim Min-ki of the ruling Democratic Party told reporters that intelligence officials had observed what they believed to be preparations for possible inspections at Punggye-ri nuclear test site and the Sohae Satellite launching ground.

The South's National Intelligence Service observed North Koreans "conducting preparation and intelligence activities that seem to be in preparation for foreign inspectors' visit," the lawmaker added, but no major movements were seen at Yongbyon.

Oct 30 09:22

US envoy ‘confident’ North Korean denuclearisation is within reach despite growing concerns that progress has stalled

Meeting with his South Korean counterpart in Seoul, Stephen Biegun said that Washington and Seoul have a shared goal of ending seven decades of hostility on the Korean peninsula.

“The primary requirement for us to get to that endpoint is to achieve the final, fully verified denuclearisation of North Korea,” Biegun said.

Oct 30 09:22

Trump hurts North Korea 'maximum pressure' approach by ignoring human rights, critics say

South Korea’s government is putting Pyongyang’s egregious human rights record on the back burner to keep alive its diplomatic outreach to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, and conservative human rights advocates say President Trump is undercutting his own “maximum pressure” campaign on the North’s nuclear programs by following Seoul’s lead.

Since Mr. Trump and Mr. Kim held their historic Singapore summit in June, the issue of North Korean human rights abuses — including what rights advocates say are the regime’s forced labor camps and its vast network of political prisons — has “slipped off the negotiating table,” said Olivia Enos, an Asia policy analyst with The Heritage Foundation.

Oct 29 11:10

US urges North Korea denuclearization before 'shared goal' of ending war

North Korea must take steps towards verified denuclearization before achieving the "shared goal" of an official end to the 1950-53 Korean War, a U.S. envoy said on Monday.

Stephen Biegun, U.S. Special Representative for North Korea, was in Seoul to meet senior South Korean officials, including his counterpart Lee Do-hoon, amid rising signs of discord between the allies on North Korea.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This attitude of "You give us everything we want first, and then we will do something nice for you" is why US foreign policy is a shambles!

Oct 29 09:53

South Korean Patriot Missile ‘Self Destructs’ During Test-Fire

A South Korea Patriot surface-to-air missile (PAC-2) exploded seconds after launch at a South Korean firing range last Thursday.

The South Korean Air Force said that The PAC-2 missile ascended for about four seconds after blastoff at the seaside Daecheon range in South Chungcheong Province during an annual air defense guided missile practice, Yonhap News reported quoting an Air Force statement.

Oct 27 10:16

Experts: Inducements Unlikely to Help North Korea Denuclearize

Despite the lack of progress on denuclearization, Washington should not grant unilateral concessions and sanctions relief to North Korea as a way to induce denuclearization until Pyongyang takes substantial steps to dismantle its nuclear weapons program, experts said.

Steve Biegun, the U.S. special representative for North Korea, was supposed to meet with his North Korean counterpart following Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s fourth trip to North Korea on Oct. 7. But Biegun’s hoped-for discussion on denuclearization with North Korean Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son Hui did not take place.

Ever since North Korean leader Kim Jong Un agreed to completely denuclearize North Korea at the June 12 Singapore summit with the U.S. President Donald Trump, Pyongyang has been demanding sanctions relief and implementation of confidence-building measures (CBMs) that it says will guarantee North Korea’s security.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is propaganda to justify not granting North Korea any concessions.

Oct 25 05:36

Koreas Officially Start Demilitarizing Border Zone

South and North Koreas have officially launched the demilitarization process of a border village, Seoul said, as part of an agreement to ease tensions on the Korean Peninsula.
***
Washington has expressed unease over the measure, saying there is a “reasonable degree of risk” in Seoul’s plans to dismantle guard posts near the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ).

Back in June, US President Donald Trump met the North’s leader in a summit in Singapore, during which the two sides agreed to work toward denuclearization.

But that agreement has produced no tangible outcome.

The North has already taken several steps toward that goal, but the US has not reciprocated any of those moves.

>>>

Oct 23 09:16

North Korea 'bought at least $640 million in luxury goods from China in 2017', in defiance of UN sanctions

North Korea imported at least $640 million (£493 million) worth of luxury goods from China last year, in defiance of UN sanctions outlawing such trade over North Korea's nuclear and missile programmes, a South Korean politician said on Monday.

The United States has urged strict implementation of sanctions as part of a "maximum pressure" campaign which Washington has credited with bringing impoverished North Korea to the negotiating table.

But there have been signs the campaign has been losing steam since North Korea suspended nuclear and missile tests and leader Kim Jong-un vowed steps towards denuclearisation at a US-North Korean summit in June - and as China and Russia called for relaxed sanctions.

Oct 22 18:17

North and South Korea AGREE to withdraw firearms in move that could see end to KOREAN WAR

Both North and South Korea will withdraw 11 guard posts within a 0.6-mile radius of the Military Demarcation Line on their border by the end of the year.

They will also pull out all firearms from a Joint Security Area (JSA) at Panmunjom and cut to 35 each the numbers of personnel stationed there and share information on surveillance equipment.

Today, the three sides agreed to remove firearms and guard posts from the JSA by Thursday, and carry out a joint inspection over the following two days, Seoul’s defence ministry said.

Oct 21 09:44

US and South Korea call off another major military exercise, hoping to give diplomacy with Pyongyang a chance

The Pentagon says the annual Vigilant Ace air exercises have been suspended ‘to give the diplomatic process every opportunity to continue’

A US official said Donald Trump’s next meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will not be until next year

Oct 19 09:23

S. Korea, US cancel another major military exercise this year

The Pentagon and South Korea are canceling another major military exercise this year, citing a push for diplomatic progress with North Korea, AP reports. The top Pentagon spokeswoman, Dana W. White, says Washington and Seoul are suspending an air exercise known as Vigilant Ace “to give the diplomatic process every opportunity to continue.” Pentagon chief Jim Mattis is in Singapore for a meeting of Asian defense ministers. Vigilant Ace is an annual exercise.

Oct 18 11:09

China may 'ease up' on sanctions against North Korea as the trade war drags on 

As President Donald Trump continues to ramp up trade pressure on China, Beijing may be "less motivated to cooperate" with the U.S. over sanctions against North Korea, an expert told CNBC Wednesday.

"China has been taking steps to relax its enforcement of sanctions even before the trade tensions with the United States flared up," according to Scott Seaman director of Asia at political risk consulting firm Eurasia Group.

But as the trade war between the world's two largest economies drags on, China could find more reasons to relax its enforcement of sanctions against North Korea, he said.

Oct 17 11:35

North Korea slams US for 'evil' sanctions push

North Korea's state media on Tuesday (Oct 16) slammed the United States for an "evil" attempt to maintain sanctions against Pyongyang, accusing President Donald Trump of blocking progress in inter-Korean relations.

The declaration threatens to upset the negotiations between Washington and the nuclear-armed North, in which Trump is expected to hold a second summit soon with Pyongyang's leader Kim Jong Un.

At their first meeting in Singapore in June they signed a vaguely-worded pledge on denuclearisation, but little progress has been made since then with the two sides sparring over the meaning of the text.

Pyongyang has not made any explicit public promise to give up its existing arsenal but has repeatedly called for UN Security Council sanctions imposed over its weapons programmes to be loosened, citing a freeze in its nuclear and missile tests.

For its part Washington has been adamant the measures should be maintained until Pyongyang's complete denuclearisation.

Oct 16 18:01

Threat of US Coup Hangs Over South Korean Efforts to Reconcile With North

Though South Korea is able to lift sanctions against North Korea and work with its neighbor to reconnect railways and roads, it must proceed with caution, since US authorities could stage a coup if things don't go their way, author Tim Beal told Sputnik.

Both North and South Korea on Monday agreed to begin reconnecting rail and road links, stating that joint on-site surveys of the South's Gyeongui and Donghae railway lines would begin in late October and early November, respectively. The move is one more step to improving bilateral relations between to two countries.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Any attempt to scuttle this evolving rapprochement by the US government would be stupid, short-sighted, and should be the US's cue for beginning to withdraw its troops from South Korea; unfortunately, just because something is the most ham-fistedly, pig-headedly stupid thing the US government can do, is utterly no guarantee that it won't try to do it.

Oct 16 09:40

Koreas to reconnect roads, rail, U.S. concerned over easing sanctions

The two Koreas agreed on Monday to begin reconnecting rail and road links, another step in an improving relationship in spite of U.S. concerns that the rapid North-South thaw could undermine efforts to press North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons.

Oct 16 09:40

North and South Korea agree to reconnect roads and railways

North and South Korean delegations met Monday and reached a number of agreements to further the thaw in relations between Pyongyang and Seoul. Chief among them is a plan to reconnect roads and railways severed when the Korean Peninsula was split in half by war more than half a century ago.

Oct 16 09:39

North Korea’s economic growth – from Pyongyang’s perspective

Has North Korea’s economy been growing under sanctions? That’s what an economist in Pyongyang claims. In a recent interview with Kyodo (published here by Japan Times), Ri Gi Song at Pyongyang’s Institute of Economics at the Academy of Social Sciences, claimed that North Korea’s GDP per capita grew by 3.7 percent in 2017, a year during which the country was virtually banned from selling its most crucial export goods, and faced very harsh conditions for importing crucial resources such as oil and fuel. When factoring in population growth, the GDP-growth-figure diminishes somewhat to 3.2% (see below), but it’s still firmly in the same range.

Oct 16 09:39

Russian-US consultations on North Korea to be held in Moscow on October 16

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov has said he will held a meeting with US Special Representative for North Korea Stephen Biegun in Moscow on October 16.

"Tomorrow, I will have a meeting with US Special Representative for North Korean Stephen Biegun," he told reporters on Monday. "We will hold a full round of consultations on the situation on the Korean Peninsula."

In September, Morgulov and Biegun had a phone conversation, during which they agreed to continue the dialogue between Moscow and Washington on a settlement on the Korean Peninsula.

Oct 16 09:38

US diplomat headed to Moscow for North Korea meeting

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s top envoy for North Korea will travel to Moscow for meetings this week about the denuclearization process, officials with both sides confirmed Monday.

"We will hold a full round of consultations on the situation on the Korean Peninsula,” Russian deputy foreign minister Igor Morgulov said Monday, according to state-run TASS.

Stephen Biegun, the U.S. special representative for North Korea, will stop in Moscow Tuesday before heading west to Paris and Brussels. His trip comes on the heels of a separate summit Morgulov hosted with North Korean and Chinese diplomats, which saw the two Eastern powers back the pariah state’s call for sanctions relief in the midst of negotiations over North Korea’s nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs.

Oct 16 09:38

North Korea - South Korea diplomacy flourishes, but what about Kim Jong Un's nukes?

North and South Korea continued their push for peace Monday with high-level talks that resulted in a host of agreements, including a plan by the rivals for a groundbreaking ceremony this year on an ambitious project to connect their railways and roads. The agreements come amid unease in Washington over the speed of inter-Korean engagement.

Many outsiders believe that U.S.-led efforts to rid North Korea of its nuclear-tipped missiles are lagging significantly behind the Koreas' efforts to move past decades of bitter rivalry.

Oct 15 13:53

S.Korea, DPRK agree to break ground for railway, road connection

South Korea and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) agreed Monday to hold a groundbreaking ceremony in late November or early December to modernize and eventually connect railways and roads across the inter-Korean border.

The agreement was reached after the high-level dialogue held earlier in the day at the Peace House, a South Korean building in the truce village of Panmunjom, according to a pool report from South Korean media.

Before the groundbreaking ceremony, the two Koreas agreed to do a field study on railways along the west corridor of the Korean Peninsula from late October and railways along the east corridor from early November.

Oct 15 07:53

Pope Francis reportedly visiting North Korea in coming months

Legislator suggests pontiff wants to visit the isolated nation soon - the first time a pope will travel to North Korea.

Oct 13 11:20

SOUTH KOREAN LEADER SAYS NORTH INTENDS TO ABOLISH NUCLEAR WEAPONS, URGES U.S. TO OFFICIALLY DECLARE END TO KOREAN WAR

South Korean President Moon Jae-in called on the U.S. to officially declare an end to the Korean War during an interview Friday, adding that the North had “promised complete denuclearization.”

“If North Korea takes certain measures, the end-of-war declaration would be a political statement that would announce that the long-standing hostile relations between Pyongyang and Washington had ended,” Moon told the BBC, adding that he wanted the declaration to happen at the “earliest possible date.”

Oct 13 10:46

North Korea intends to abolish all nuclear weapons, South says

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un intends to abolish all nuclear weapons, materials and facilities to achieve “complete” denuclearization, South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who held his third summit with Kim last month, said on Friday.

Oct 13 10:23

Outside In: The Trump administration’s plan to remake the Middle East

The only promise that is new about the promised peace plan is the way it will be forced on the Palestinians: no one has promised that the plan itself will be new. With Saudi Arabia and Egypt—the outside—brought onside with the promise of continued military aid despite their crimes against humanity and violations of international law and the Palestinians weakened by being silenced, economically crushed and stripped of any friends to help them, the United States and Israel are now free to attempt to impose a peace plan on the Palestinians.

Oct 12 10:40

US Warship Joins South Korean Fleet Despite North Talks

US nuclear-powered warship USS Ronald Reagan has joined the South Korean naval fleet off for a once-in-a-decade international fleet review in waters off the southern island of Jeju. 

Oct 12 10:13

Australia Sends Guided Missile Frigate to E. China Sea to Enforce N. Korea Sanctions

Australia has assigned a guided missile frigate to the East China Sea to boost international efforts to enforce sanctions against North Korea.
Defense Force Chief of Joint Operations, Air Marshall Mel Hupfeld said the warship with a crew of 230 will be supported by two Australian AP-3C Orion surveillance aircraft based in Japan, RT reported.

The occasional deployment of maritime patrol aircraft and surface vessels to the region “adds weight to Australia’s ongoing economic and diplomatic pressure on North Korea and enhances the capacity of ongoing multinational enforcement efforts,” he said.

>>>

Oct 12 08:25

Under pressure, South Korea backs off talk of easing sanctions on North

South Korea on Thursday walked back on a proposal to lift some of its unilateral sanctions against North Korea following U.S. President Donald Trump's blunt retort that Seoul could "do nothing" without Washington's approval. Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha had said on Wednesday that Seoul was considering lifting measures applied after a deadly attack in 2010 that killed 46 South Korean sailors. She cited the intent to create more diplomatic momentum for talks over North Korea's nuclear program.

South Korean conservatives reacted with anger as well, and Kang's ministry downplayed her comments later, saying in a statement that the government has yet to start a "full-fledged" review of sanctions, meaning no decision was imminent.

Oct 12 07:51

Moon Jae-in Urges US To Declare End Of War With North Korea

The South Korean president said Pyongyang has taken steps to achieve peace and the US should take similar measures.

(*We Sent Pompeo , forcryin'outloud !
Maybe we should send Lindsey Graham , for their troubles .)

Oct 11 12:47

So Patriot and THAAD will talk. What does that really mean?

The Army decided earlier this year to drastically accelerate its plans to get the Patriot medium-range air-and-missile defense system and the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system to communicate.

The service has since seen an influx of cash in its fiscal 2018 and 2019 budgets approved by Congress to move forward with the effort.

But what does it really mean for Patriot and THAAD to be interoperable, and why is it seen as an urgent need on the Korean peninsula?

The Army announced in March, through its Air-and-Missile Defense Cross-Functional Team, formed to bring forward AMD modernization efforts rapidly under Army Futures Command, that it was planning to tie its two most critical AMD systems together within two years, which is key to establishing a more effective, layered approach to AMD.

Oct 11 12:28

Trump: S. Korea Won't Lift Sanctions Without US Approval

U.S. President Donald Trump has said that South Korea will only lift sanctions on North Korea with his approval.

The Associated Press reported that when asked by reporters at the White House on Wednesday about the South Korean proposal to lift some unilateral sanctions on the North Trump said, “They won’t do that without our approval. They do nothing without our approval.”

The report said that Trump has encouraged U.S. allies to maintain sanctions on North Korea until it denuclearizes as part of his administration’s campaign of “maximum pressure.”

Oct 11 07:25

South Korea wants to lift sanctions on North Korea. That could kill Trump’s nuclear plan.

What’s worse, South Korea could hurt ties with America — and help North Korea in the process.

Oct 11 07:01

Pompeo complained that North & South Korea talk peace without him – South FM

The US Secretary of State expressed “discontent” with peaceful negotiations between North and South Korea, which signed a military pact during last month’s summit without consulting him.

True to the spirit of American exceptionalism, Pompeo complained about being left out of the loop regarding the historic peace talks between the two Koreas. US President Donald Trump never skips a chance to brag about his supposed contributions to peace between the nations, extending the US’s addiction to interventionism even to bilateral treaties like this one – negotiations between neighbors half a world away from American shores.

Pompeo’s complaint was revealed by South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha, speaking to an opposition lawmaker about a recent phone call with Pompeo. “I wouldn’t say he made strong impressions. [It was] discontent, about how he was not briefed sufficiently,” she said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The Koreans may understandably think it is none of his business.

Oct 10 08:50

Kim Jong-un Invites Pope Francis to North Korea

Kim Jong-un, the leader of North Korea, which has been condemned as one of the worst suppressors of religious freedom in the world, has invited Pope Francis to visit his country, South Korea’s government said Tuesday.

The invitation will be relayed by South Korea’s president, Moon Jae-in, a Roman Catholic, when he visits the Vatican for two days next week to seek the pope’s help in easing tensions on the divided Korean Peninsula, said Kim Eui-kyeom, a spokesman of Mr. Moon.

Mr. Moon met with Mr. Kim in Pyongyang, the North Korean capital, last month.

“If the pope visits Pyongyang, we will give him a rousing welcome,” Mr. Kim told Mr. Moon, according to Mr. Moon’s spokesman.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Lock up the kiddies.

Oct 09 12:25

North Korea Will Allow Inspections at Nuclear Test Site, Pompeo Confirms

Secretary of State Mike Pomepo confirmed to reporters in Seoul that Kim Jong Un has agreed to allow international inspectors to visit Punggye-ri, the dismantled nuclear teting site. A date has not yet been set, but Pompeo says that is just a question of logistics.

Punggye-ri was a hollowed up series of tunnels under a mountain, wherein the North Korean government conducted several successful nuclear weapons tests over the past 12 years. The site was dismantled in April and May, as part of a deal to move toward denuclearization.

While reporters were welcomed to oversee the collapsing of the site, some critics complained that international inspectors were never allowed to conduct close-up inspections to confirm the site was totally unusable. Ironically, many of those same critics are now dismissing the invitation for inspectors as meaningless, since the site was already dismantled months ago.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF these reports are true, it indicates that North Korea is moving in a positive direction, and that should be applauded.

President Trump took one heck of a leap of faith here, and should be commended for having had the courage in believing that there was absolutely another outcome, other than war, which could be made to happen.

I wish he could have taken the same road with Iran; unfortunately, now, however, being firmly in the unyielding grasp of the Neocons, he will never attempt that kind of approach with it.

Oct 09 11:53

Russia drawing up plans for Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong Un to talk

Russia is drawing up plans to host a meeting between President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Moscow, according to the Kremlin.

Last month, Mr Putin invited Mr Kim to visit his country but details about where and when the talks could take place have yet to be decided.

The latest comments from the Kremlin come after a visit by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to North Korea.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This once again proves Russia's President Putin to be one of the "smartest guys in the room" when it comes to geopolitics, and the importance of booming economies trumping war every possible time.

Mining in North Korea

This article states:

"Mining in North Korea is important to the country's economy. North Korea is naturally abundant in metals such as magnesite, zinc, tungsten, and iron; with magnesite resources of 6 billion tonnes (second largest in the world), particularly in the Hamgyeong-do and Jagang-do provinces. However, often these cannot be mined due to the acute shortage of electricity in the country, as well as the lack of proper tools to mine these materials and an antiquated industrial base.

North Korea has reserves of more than 200 mineral types distributed over 80% of its territory with ten reserves recording large deposits of magnetite, tungsten ore, graphite, gold ore, and molybdenum. Among the largest resources with more than 2 million tons of estimated reserve are: Zinc which tops the list with 21 million tons of estimated resource; followed by non-metallic resource of 21 million tons of limestone and magnesite 6 million tons; and other mineral sources such as iron 5 million tons, anthracite 5 million tons, copper 3 million tons, barite 2 million tons, gold and graphite also 2 million tons each.[1]"

In this upcoming meeting, Putin will stress that Russia will be willing, and is able, to provide the infrastructure, equipment ,and engineering know-how to make sure that the potential financial wealth provided by these resources can now be realized, provided that Russia gets a reasonable "hunk of the action" in return for making the people, and the government, of North Korea far more prosperous.

I think that this potential proposal will be win/win music to Kim Jung Un's ears.

Oct 09 09:45

Why North Korea’s latest nuclear concession isn’t one at all

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Monday that he and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un made “significant progress” over the weekend toward dismantling Pyongyang’s nuclear program. The problem is it’s not clear what advancement he’s pointing to.

The two met for a nearly three-hour summit in Pyongyang on Sunday to discuss a way to break the impasse in discussions. Speaking after the meeting on Monday, Pompeo told reporters that North Korea has agreed to let international inspectors visit Punggye-ri, the site of all six of North Korea’s nuclear tests. In September 2017, Pyongyang tested a nuke there that was around seven times stronger than the bomb America dropped on Hiroshima in 1945.

Letting inspectors visit the facility may sound well and good, except for one thing: It’s already been destroyed.

Oct 08 08:23

Kim, Pompeo agree to 2nd US-North Korea summit 'at earliest date'

Kim Jong Un has agreed to hold a second summit with US President Donald Trump as soon as possible, Seoul said Sunday, after Washington's top diplomat held "productive" talks on denuclearisation with the North Korean leader in Pyongyang.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with Kim on Sunday morning for around two hours of talks followed by a lunch in the North's capital, before flying to Seoul on a whirlwind diplomatic visit to the region.

Pompeo said "he agreed with Chairman Kim to hold the second US-North Korea summit at the earliest date possible", South Korea's presidential office said in a statement, although no specific time or location has yet been agreed.

Oct 08 07:52

Another US-North Korea summit is coming, South Korea says

It appears as though a Trump-Kim summit 2.0 might be on the horizon. How far out on the horizon, though, is still unclear.

The office of South Korean President Moon-Jae in said that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un during Pompeo’s trip to North Korea on Sunday agreed to hold a new summit between Kim and United States President Donald Trump “at the earliest date possible.” Moon had been briefed by Pompeo on his North Korea trip.

A spokesman for South Korea’s dovish leader told the New York Times the US and North Korea are expected to soon hold “working-level talks to set the details of the planned meeting,” including the date and venue.

Oct 07 10:42

US think tank claims continued activity at North Korea nuke site

US researchers say they have observed continued activity at a nuclear facility in North Korea which is accusing Washington of not implementing pledges made at a June summit of their leaders.

The researchers, who work for the Washington-based 38 North think tank, released on Friday satellite photos allegedly indicating continued activity at North Korea’s Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center.

The photos, they said, also showed an ongoing dredging of a river near a pump house, which draws cooling water for the site’s reactor.

The group said the photos, taken on September 24, showed minimal movements of vehicles and equipment in the area, but the purpose of their activity was unknown.

Oct 07 07:47

Immigrant Girl Will Be Deported Because Adoptive Father Missed Deadline While Serving in Afghanistan

Here's the sort of story that should never happen, especially in a country that prides itself on its humanity and openness to newcomers.
In 2013, Army Lt. Col. Patrick Schreiber and his wife put off officially adopting their teenaged daughter, Hyebin, who was born in the Republic of Korea. The reason? He was about to deploy to Afghanistan for a year. When he returned, they put through the paperwork, adopted her, and then started working on her citizenship. But Hyebin had turned 17 in the interim, which is a problem:

Oct 06 09:53

North Korea looks to get China, Russia on side before denuclearization talks with US

North Korea will look to consolidate support for the lifting of economic sanctions during its latest talks with China and Russia, while also strengthening its bargaining position on the denuclearization issue ahead of U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s visit to Pyongyang this weekend, observers said.

Oct 05 07:51

Could North Korea be sincere?

This week South and North Korean soldiers began clearing mines along their heavily fortified border. As The Economist went to press, America’s secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, was about to fly to Pyongyang to arrange a second summit meeting between President Donald Trump and Mr Kim, to follow the television spectacular starring the two leaders in Singapore in June. Meanwhile, Mr Kim’s fourth get-together with Mr Moon is planned for later this year in Seoul, the South Korean capital.

Oct 03 08:20

North Korea says peace declaration not a bargaining chip

North Korea warned Washington through its state media Tuesday that a declaration ending the Korean War shouldn’t be seen as a bargaining chip in denuclearization talks — but suggested lifting sanctions might be.

The North’s official news agency issued a commentary claiming Pyongyang has taken significant measures to end hostile relations between the two countries but said the U.S. is “trying to subdue” it through sanctions, a not-so-subtle call for Washington to lift sanctions if it wants further progress in their stalled nuclear negotiations.

The commentary said a declaration replacing a 65-year-old armistice to formally end the war “is not just a gift from a man to another,” and added, “it can never be a bargaining chip for getting the DPRK denuclearized.”

Oct 02 13:37

Koreas begin clearing landmines from heavily fortified border

Troops from North and South Korea have started removing some of the more than 800,000 landmines buried along their border, officials say.

In the South, clearing has started at the heavily fortified Joint Security Area (JSA) in the village of Panmunjom.

Mines will also be removed from a separate site where hundreds of soldiers were killed in the Korean war.

The move was agreed when the leaders of the two Koreas, Kim Jong-un and Moon Jae-in, met last month in Pyongyang.

Oct 02 13:24

North, South Korea Begin Clearing Landmines From Border

The Korean War began in 1950, and 68 years later a peace deal is still not finalized. There is hope, however, as troops from both Koreas are active along the demilitarized zone, removing some of the estimated 800,000 landmines buried around the area.

It took generations to mine that long demilitarized zone at the border, and it’s going to take a long time to totally clear it. Work is starting in the Joint Security Area (JSA), the narrowest part, near the truce village of Panmunjom.

The hope, according to those familiar with the work, is to totally demine the JSA within the next 20 days. After that, guard posts and all weapons will also be removed. This will leave the JSA with unarmed troops stationed inside.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Color me at least a little hopeful at this development.

Oct 01 09:48

North Korea says 'no way' it will disarm before US relaxes crippling sanctions it says are destroying trust

North Korea's foreign minister on Saturday told the United Nations there was 'no way' that his country would disarm first as long as the United States continued to push for tough enforcement of sanctions against Pyongyang.

Addressing the United Nations General Assembly, Ri Yong Ho accused Washington of creating a deadlock in talks on denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.

'The recent deadlock is because the US relies on coercive measures which are lethal to trust-building,' Ri told the assembly.

'Without any trust in the US, there will be no confidence in our national security and under such circumstances, there is no way we will unilaterally disarm ourselves first.'

Sep 30 09:50

Intentions of Moon and Kim need US input to become reality

Plans for economic development cannot happen under present sanctions, and first require Washington to obtain guarantees on denuclearisation

As expected, the third meeting between Moon Jae-in and Kim Jong-un produced a highly ambiguous statement.

No timeline for a declaration of Pyongyang’s nuclear arsenal and no framework for nuclear dismantlement arose.

Yet optimists may disagree. The joint military declaration agreed to a cease of military exercises “aimed at each other along the Military Demarcation Line”, and the withdrawal of guard posts along the Demilitarised Zone. Pyongyang pledged to close its nuclear test facility at Tongchang-ri, as part of the two Koreas “pushing forward the complete denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula”, and inter-Korean economic cooperation projects were proposed.

>>>

Sep 30 05:33

Trump Should Let South and North Korea Build Peace

(*I'm not as confident as I thought I was in 2016 that it's in his nature !)

Sep 29 09:46

Mike Pompeo floats prospect of officially ending Korean War ahead of Trump-Kim summit

Given the Trump administration's goal of a complete, verifiable denuclearization of North Korea during President Trump's first term, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is eager to maintain U.S.-North Korean engagement. As he prepares for upcoming discussions with the North Koreans, he is leaving one tool conspicuously on the table: the prospect of an official declaration to end the Korean War.

"It's hard to know. I don't want to prejudge precisely where we'll end up," Pompeo said this week when asked if President Trump and Kim Jong Un could sign a declaration to end the war at their next summit. "But make no mistake about it, there is real progress being made."

Sep 27 10:27

Japan's Abe open to meeting North Korean leader Kim Jong-un

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, a longtime hardliner on North Korea, said he was willing to meet Kim Jong-un at a speech at the UN General Assembly.

Abe, who one year ago warned at the United Nations that the window for diplomacy with North Korea was closing, took a more open but still cautious tone on Tuesday in his latest address to the world body.

But he said that any summit would be devoted to resolving a decades-old row over North Korea's abductions of Japanese civilians - a deeply emotive issue for much of the Japanese public on which Abe built his political career.

"In order to resolve the abduction issue, I am also ready to break the shell of mutual distrust with North Korea, get off to a new start and meet face to face with Chairman Kim Jong-un," Abe said in his UN address.

Sep 26 10:24

Trump praises North Korea's Kim but says sanctions must stay for now

U.S. President Donald Trump praised North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un on Tuesday for his courage in taking steps to disarm, but said much work still had to be done and sanctions must remain in place on North Korea until it denuclearizes.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"Give us everything we want first, then we'll maybe do something nice for you (unless we invade)." -- Official White Horse Souse

Sep 25 09:36

North and South Korea Sign Agreement for ‘Era of No War,’ Will Cease All Hostile Acts

South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un made a historic announcement, committing to an “era of no war” during the two leaders’ joint press conference held on Wednesday in Pyongyang, North Korea.

The announcement was made at the Paekhwawon State Guesthouse on the second day of a three-day summit between the two leaders who both expressed hopes in containing the threat of war on the Korean Peninsula.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is a monumental step forward, between North and South Korea; let's hope that the American government just stays out of the way of the process as this is cemented by both countries.

Sep 25 07:33

Trump says second meeting with North Korea's Kim could be 'quite soon'

President Donald Trump, arriving at the United Nations on Monday morning, said he and Kim Jong Un will meet for a second time "quite soon."

"It looks like we'll have a second summit quite soon. As you know, Kim Jong Un wrote a letter -- a beautiful letter -- and asked me for a second meeting and we will be doing that. (Secretary of State Mike) Pompeo will work that out in the immediate future," Trump said, claiming there has been "tremendous progress on North Korea."

Sep 24 12:55

US To Start "Disrupting" North Korean Oil Smuggling

An international coalition of American allies will start “detecting and disrupting” North Korean oil smuggling operations at sea, reports the Washington Examiner.

“The United States has deployed aircraft and surface vessels to detect and disrupt these activities,” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a news release.

Japan, Australia, and New Zealand, announced Friday they would aid “monitoring and surveillance activities against illicit maritime activities,” with a particular focus on ship-to-ship transfers of oil.

Make no mistake these are the neocons at work in the Trump administration.

Sep 24 11:09

North Korea Seeks Investments, Business Chief From South Says

North Korea signaled it wants to bring in investments from South Korean companies to help modernize the secluded country, according to one of the business chiefs that went to Pyongyang last week.

North Korea wants to have economic cooperation and technical assistance from the South, Sohn Kyung-shik, the 79-year-old co-chairman of CJ Group and the head of the Korea Employers Federation, told Bloomberg Television’s Shery Ahn in an interview. “What they really want are investments to set up industry there,” he said.

The comments reflect the optimism that’s trickling out in the wake of last week’s summit between North Korea’s Kim Jong Un and South Korea’s Moon Jae-in. But many hurdles remain, as both countries are technically still at war and conducting business with North Korea is heavily restricted by United Nations sanctions.

Sep 24 10:54

As Koreas Make Peace, Will Trump End the War?

At their third summit, the leaders of North and South Korea made new progress in their historic effort to bring peace to the Peninsula. But for North Korea to denuclearize, is the US prepared to formally end the Korean War, and withdraw US forces?

Sep 21 10:09

Trump Regime Hardliners Oppose Korean Peninsula Peace

A US state of war against North Korea has existed since Harry Truman’s aggression against the DPRK in the early 1950s.

Trump regime hardliners want no letup in US hostility toward the country, going all-out to prevent improved relations agreed on by DLT and Kim Jong-un during mid-June summit talks.

Kim and South Korean President Moon Jae-in support a formal end to the 1950s war. Following their Tuesday summit talks in Pyongyang, they signed a joint statement, proclaiming a state of war’s end, Moon’s spokesman saying:

“Leaders of the South and the North…announced the end of the war on the Korean Peninsula by their agreements.”

Sep 20 18:41

End to Korean War could break nuclear impasse, says Moon

President Moon of South Korea has urged the United States to end the impasse in denuclearisation talks with North Korea by formally declaring an end to hostilities in the Korean War.

Such a declaration, which would fall short of a fully-fledged peace treaty, could give the impetus for North Korea to offer further concessions without prompting calls for US troops to pull out. The conflict ended in an armistice in 1953.

Sep 20 10:26

North, South Korea to Form Joint Military Committee

On Wednesday, President Moon Jae-in and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un signed a joint statement on the general improvement of inter-Korean relations, capping off a very successful third summit which appears to have gotten the denuclearization operations back on track.

In addition to denuclearization and peace talks efforts, the two Koreas agreed to found a joint military committee, which will be charged with maintaining communication between the two nations, and prevent any accidental clashes.

This is potentially a hugely important step, as the two nations try to reduce decades of military tensions, and negotiate efforts to move their respective forces away from the border as the efforts to negotiate a peace treaty advance.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Color me slightly optimistic here.

Sep 20 09:33

Has the Korean summit proved Moon is a master diplomat?

A TRUMP-KIM BRIDGE: HAS KOREAN SUMMIT PROVED MOON IS A MASTER DIPLOMAT?
***
Regarding denuclearisation, there are more specific statements than the first statement from April,” Lim Jae-cheon, a North Korea studies professor at Korea University, told the (*south china morning) Post – referring to this year’s first inter-Korean summit, which contained a vague commitment to a “nuclear-free Korean peninsula”.

Nam Chang-hee, an international relations professor at Inha University, said the summit’s outcome looked to be “positioned between a satisfactory move towards the promised denuclearisation and repeated mere rhetoric”.
***
“I think the South Korean public will welcome the joint agreement of Moon and Kim partially because it contains a better inter-Korean future on peace and reconciliation, and partially because the South Korean media created a positive image of the summit meeting,” Lim said.

>>>

(*enter Pompeo , the broth spoiling chef !)

Sep 20 09:30

'Dream come true' for Moon as Korean leaders make mountain pilgrimage

Moon Jae-in, the South Korean president, stepped into the shallow waters of Heaven Lake, regarded as the spiritual home of the Korean people, bent down and scooped up a glassful of water.

Kim Jong-un, his North Korean counterpart, watched from a distance. Moon was fulfilling a long-held dream to visit Mount Paektu, which straddles the border between North Korea and China. At the summit the two men held hands and thrust them into the air as they posed for a photo with their wives, the lake in the background.

The highly symbolic trip capped a three-day visit by Moon to North Korea, the first by a South Korean leader in 11 years. After two days of talks, Kim pledged to close a missile testing site that was crucial to North Korea’s development of intercontinental ballistic missiles, and offered to shut the country’s only known nuclear complex in exchanged for unspecified “reciprocal measures” from the US.

Sep 20 08:52

US 'ready to restart negotiations' with North Korea

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says he is ready to restart negotiations with Pyongyang, with the aim of denuclearising North Korea "by 2021".

Discussions between the two sides had stalled following a broad-strokes agreement made earlier this year.

But this week's inter-Korean summit saw the North's Kim Jong-un agreeing to shut a major missile launch site.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

North and South Korea are clearly reunifying, and Pompeo is struggling to look like he is still relevant to the process.

Sep 19 15:28

Full North Korean denuclearisation by early 2021, Pompeo says

(*as if he had something to do with it . where was he "sawing logs" , at his desk , when Moon & Kim Declared Peace in Korea ? )

Sep 19 12:37

South Korean President Greeted in North With Calls for Peace, Reunification

With the previous two inter-Korean summits both major successes, the three-day summit this week in Pyongyang kicked off early Tuesday with the arrival of South Korean President Moon Jae-in, and high hopes for more progress.

Moon’s arrival, and his joint motorcade to the talks with Kim Jong Un was met with huge crowds in the streets, waving and cheering the passing cars, and chanting for peace and the reunification of the Korean Peninsula.

The greetings of the two leaders in a celebratory environment reflected Kim’s own comments on the matter, that he expects more progress after the successes of the past. Peace is expected to be one of the immediate focuses of the talk.

President Moon made clear that his goal for the summit is an irreversible peace agreement. Beyond that, early discussions are said to focus on trying to get the denuclearization process back going after it stalled in recent weeks.

Sep 19 12:36

Moon: North Korea Agrees to Allow Nuclear Inspections

In the course of this week’s inter-Korean summit, South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in announced on Wednesday morning that North Korea has agreed to several moves, including allowing international nuclear inspectors into the country to observe the continued dismantling of the nuclear program.

This appears to have been the result of early discussions on how to get the denuclearization process started up again. Kim Jong Un agreed to permanently dismantle a missile engine test site and launch pad, and that would be where the inspectors are to be in attendance.

Tentatively, North Korea is also committed to permanently dismantling the Nyongbyon nuclear complex if the US takes “corresponding measures.” It is unclear what the US is expected to do in return.

Sep 19 08:34

North Korea Agrees to Permanently Dismantle Nuclear Complex If U.S. Takes Corresponding Steps

South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un announced a sweeping set of agreements after their second day of talks in Pyongyang on Wednesday that included a promise by Kim to permanently dismantle the North’s main nuclear complex if the United States takes corresponding measures, the acceptance of international inspectors to monitor the closing of a key missile test site and launch pad and a vow to work together to host the Summer Olympics in 2032.

Declaring they had made a major step toward peace on the Korean Peninsula, the two leaders were side by side as they announced the joint statement to a group of North and South Korean reporters after a closed-door meeting Wednesday morning.

Sep 19 06:01

Korean defense chiefs sign ‘military pact’ after Kim & Moon adopt denuclearization roadmap

South Korean President Moon Jae-in and the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un have signed a joint statement following their bilateral talks in Pyongyang. The countries’ defense chiefs have meanwhile signed a separate military pact.

As part of the military agreement, the neighbors will halt border drills from November 1, Yonhap reports. South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-moo and North Korea’s No Kwang-chol also agreed to stop military flights in the vicinity of the demarcation line. In addition, the agreement envisions setting up a buffer zone in the Yellow Sea and suspending maritime drills.

As a clear sign of mutual trust, the Pyongyang military agreement also calls for the withdrawal of soldiers from the demilitarized zone and disarming the servicemen keeping watch at Panmunjom border village. The nations also agreed that each would close eleven border guard posts by the end of 2018.

Sep 19 05:52

Seoul: North, South Korean Leaders in Fact Proclaimed End of State of War

North Korea and South Korea signed an agreement in defense sector as well as a joint statement following the results of the summit in Pyongyang.
South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un have in fact proclaimed the end of the state of war, the South Korean presidential spokesperson said on Wednesday, RIA Novosti reported.

"Leaders of the South and the North have in fact announced the end of the war on the Korean Peninsula by their agreements," the spokesperson stated.

>>>

Sep 19 04:37

North, South Korea agree to reconnect rails, roads across border

The leaders of North and South Korea, Kim Jong Un and Moon Jae-in, agreed to reconnect severed rails and roads across the border, according to their joint statement signed on Wednesday. "South and North have agreed that works to reconnect the railways and roads in the east and west should begin within a year," the document reads. According to earlier reports, the project’s ultimate goal is to ensure access to Russia’s Trans-Siberian Rail for prompt deliveries of South Korean cargo to Europe.
North, South Koreas agree to bid for co-hosting 2032 Summer Olympic games. Besides, the two nations agreed to send joint teams to the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo http://tass.com/sport/1022238

Sep 19 04:34

North Korea agrees to shut down nuclear reactor in Yongbyon

North Korea agreed to shut down its experimental nuclear reactor in the Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center, South Korean president Moon Jae-in said on Wednesday after talks with his North Korean counterpart Kim Jong Un in Pyongyang. "North Korea gave its consent to fully stop the work of the nuclear reactor in Yongbyon," he said. A joint statement, adopted by the two nations after the talks, says that Pyongyang would make similar steps toward denuclearization if the United States honors the agreements reached during the Singapore summit of US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. The Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center houses an uranium enrichment facility and a 5-megawatt reactor, built by North Korean scientists in 1986. According to experts, every year it can produce enough materials to make several nuclear warheads...

Sep 18 15:52

This is how North Korea welcomed South Korea's president

Sep 18 09:40

TRUMP COMMITS TO ENDLESS WAR

Tags: AFGHANISTAN AFRICA ASIA CHINA IRAN IRAQ KOREA MIDDLE EAST SOUTH AMERICA SYRIA (*VS.) WHITE HOUSE

Sep 18 08:17

In North Korea, Shouts for Reunification and Peace Greet South’s Leader

When Mr. Moon stepped off his plane at the Pyongyang International Airport, a smiling Mr. Kim was waiting on the tarmac with a military honor guard ...

Sep 17 18:59

South Korea’s Leader Arrives in North Korea to Meet Kim Jong-un

President Moon Jae-in of South Korea arrived in Pyongyang Tuesday for his third summit with Kim Jong-un, North Korea’s leader, to work toward a common goal: fashioning a political statement this year declaring the end of the Korean War.

Such a declaration, although not a legally binding treaty, could carry far-reaching repercussions, helping North Korea escalate its campaign for the withdrawal of American troops from the South, analysts said. For that and other reasons, the United States has strong reservations about such a breakthrough.

A smiling Mr. Kim hugged Mr. Moon after he stepped off his plane in the Sunan International Airport in Pyongyang. As the two leaders later moved to their cars after inspecting a military honor guard, a crowd of North Koreans shouted “hurrah!” while fervently waving plastic flowers and “Korea-is-one” flags that showed an undivided Korean Peninsula.

Sep 17 10:59

MATTIS Vs. TRUMP: MUTINY WITHIN The TRUMP WHITE HOUSE 

On the issue of Korea, it is becoming increasingly clear that General “Mad Dog” Mattis, General John Kelly, and the Pentagon top brass do not see eye to eye with Donald Trump on a whole host of issues, including:

1. Withdrawal of some 28,000 U.S. troops from the Korean Peninsula.

Trump does not understand why both South Korea and Japan, both wealthy and developed, have to “mooch off” on U.S. military security protection, and not bear the burden for their own defense, and why the American military presence is even needed in East Asia.

Sep 17 10:43

Why Samsung's billionaire chief is headed to North Korea

The leader of Samsung's sprawling business empire will visit North Korea this week along with the heads of other top South Korean corporations.
Jay Y. Lee, Samsung's billionaire chief, is one of nearly a dozen business leaders traveling to Pyongyang with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Tuesday, according to a statement from the president's office.

Moon will meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un during the visit — the first trip to Pyongyang by a sitting South Korean president since 2007. It reflects warming ties between the two governments, which have fueled hopes of deeper economic cooperation.

Moon laid out ambitious plans last month that would dramatically transform and connect the two economies, giving South Korea a land link to the rest of the Asian continent, potentially opening up lucrative trade and infrastructure links.

Sep 16 10:02

US calls for urgent UN meeting on North Korea sanctions after accusing Russia of interfering with report

The U.S. on Friday called for an urgent meeting of the U.N. Security Council on the implementation of sanctions on North Korea, a day after Ambassador Nikki Haley accused Russia of meddling in an independent report on the sanctions.

“Given recent efforts by some Member States to undermine and obstruct North Korea sanctions implementation, the United States has called an urgent United Nations Security Council meeting for Monday at 10 a.m. to discuss the implementation and enforcement of U.N. sanctions on North Korea,” a statement from the U.S. Mission read.

The statement did not name countries, but it came a day after Haley accused Russia of interfering in a report from the U.N.’s independent Panel of Experts on the implementation of sanctions. Haley’s office said that the report submitted to the Security Council was amended at Moscow’s request, which it said included violations implicating Russian actors.

Sep 16 00:51

Group of S.Korean officials head to DPRK for inter-Korean summit preparations — Yonhap

An advance group of more than 90 South Korean officials headed to North Korea on Sunday for preparations to hold the inter-Korean summit due next week, the Yonhap news agency said. According to the agency, the group comprises 93 South Korean state officials, technical specialists and reporters. It crossed the border between the two states on 19 buses. South Korean President Moon Jae-in is expected to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Pyongyang on September 18-20. According to a presidential administration official, the South Korean delegation to the event will comprise up to 200 people. The names of at least two members of it have already become known: former prime minister Lee Hoi-chang and Samsung Electronics President Kim Ki-nam.

Sep 15 11:39

Koreas Open Liaison Office at Kaesong, Establishing Permanent Line of Communication

In a major move to improve communications along the demilitarized zone, North and South Korea have opened the joint liaison office in Kaesong on Friday. This move comes just days before the third Kim-Moon summit between the nations’ respective leaders.

The liaison office was said to be facing a possible delay in the fact of US opposition, with the State Department saying that providing electricity and functioning heat to such an office might amount to a violation of US energy sanctions.

The office was originally imagined as primarily facilitating South Korean corporations’ operations at Kaesong Industrial Park. Now though, it will also serve as a de facto joint embassy for both nations, allowing for a direct permanent diplomatic link.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Color me hopeful, here.....

Sep 15 10:31

Sorry, Not Sorry: Pompeo Accuses Russia Of Undermining Efforts To Sanction North Korea

Russia is actively working to undermine US sanctions against North Korea, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told a news conference.

“I spoke with Ambassador (to UN Nikki) Haley about this earlier today, Russia has actively attempted to undermine the UN Security Council resolutions, the work of the 1718 Committee, the committee of the UN evaluates compliance with sanctions by attempting to change the language there,” Pompeo told reporters.

Sep 15 09:15

US Sets up Coalition to Track Foreign Ships Delivering Fuel to North Korea

- A US Navy ship will reportedly host military personnel from the Five Eyes countries plus Japan and South Korea to monitor foreign vessels delivering fuel to the North in violation of UN sanctions.
The coalition will include the US, the UK, Australia, New Zealand and Canada – America’s partners within the Five Eyes intelligence-sharing alliance – as well as Japan and South Korea, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing an American military official.

This is apparently the first US-led effort to track fuel deliveries to North Korea.

The coalition countries will contribute warships and military surveillance aircraft to track maritime traffic in the area.>>>

(*what's a little more breathing down their neck ?
whitehorse souce)

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