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S. Korean President urges direct Trump-Kim talks to resolve standoff

TOKYO, South Korean President Moon Jae-in urged the leaders of the US and North Korea to directly talk to each other Friday, as US President Donald Trump cancelled his scheduled meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, Yonhap News Agency reported.

“Denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and the establishment of permanent peace are historic tasks that can neither be abandoned nor delayed,” the president said in an emergency meeting with his top security officials at his office.

“I am very perplexed and it is very regrettable that the North Korea-US summit will not be held on June 12 when it was scheduled to be held,” Moon was quoted as saying at the meeting.

The remarks came shortly after Trump called off the North Korea summit, citing what he called the North’s “tremendous anger and open hostility” toward his country.

Moon noted the problem may lie in the way the countries communicated. “I hope (the countries) will resolve such issues through more direct and close dialogue between leaders,” he added.

Trump’s abrupt announcement came hours after North Korea demolished its Punggye-ri nuclear test site in a northeastern mountainous area in front of international journalists.

In response, North Korea’s Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye-gwan said Friday that his country is still willing to talk with the US to resolve pending issues “anytime and in any format.

Source: Kuwait News Agency