The newly-appointed South Korean envoy to the six-party talks, Hwang Joon-kook is in the U.S. capital for talks with his American and Japanese counterparts on drawing up countermeasures and preventative steps to deal with North Korea's latest provocations.
According to South Korean officials, Hwang is scheduled to meet with Washington's special envoy Glyn Davies, and Japanese foreign ministry director general Junichi Ihara on Monday.
Speaking to reporters upon his arrival in Washington, Hwang said the talks are designed to reaffirm coordination among the three nations, in regards to further provocative acts by North Korea.
The South Korean official also hinted that there might be a chance for a bilateral meeting with Tokyo's chief nuclear envoy something that didn't happen the last time the three countries met in this format last November.
If the meeting is held, it will reflect South Korea's push for strengthening security partnership with Japan despite a number of unresolved territorial and historical disputes.
Hwang said it would be "unnatural" for the nuclear envoys of neighboring countries not to meet.
Any talks that might occur would center on the North Korean nuclear threat, and Hwang said Seoul could not rule out the possibility that Pyongyang will make good on its threat to conduct a fourth nuclear test.
At the United Nations headquarters Friday, North Korea's deputy ambassador to the UN, Ri Tong-il repeated that threat.
He said Pyongyang would carry out a new form of nuclear test to protect itself from the U.S., which he says is "hell-bent on regime change."
Shin Se-min, Arirang News.
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