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North Korea's Kim Jong-un hosts dinner for S. Korea president's special envoys in Pyongyang Updated: 2018-03-06 04:11:07 KST

South Korean President Moon Jae-in's special delegation led by his top national security adviser
Chung Eui-yong and represented by his chief intelligence officer arrived in Pyongyang Monday afternoon one hour after taking off from Seoul Air Base marking the first such visit under the Moon administration and the first in 11 years.

The ten-member delegation that includes intelligence chief Suh Hoon who has been involved in the coordination of the two previous inter-Korean summits in 2000 and 2007 and vice Unification Minister Chun Hae-sung, another veteran official in North Korean affairs was met by Ri Son-gwon, North Korea's pointman on inter-Korean affairs and others at the Sunan International Airport in Pyongyang.

"Following 15 minutes of negotiations on the South Korean delegation's itinerary in North Korea, the two sides agreed to attend dinner hosted by North Korean leader Kim Jong-un at 6 pm, Seoul time."

This marks the first time the reclusive state leader has met any South Korean official since he took power upon his father's death in late 2011.
The special envoys from Seoul are believed to be carrying a letter from Mr. Moon to Mr. Kim.

"The South Korean delegation is staying at the Kobangsan Guest House, a luxurious resort along the Taedong River in Pyongyang. The delegation believes North Korea has made lots of preparations to best accommodate the South Koreans."

Prior to leaving for Pyongyang on Monday, President Moon's chief special envoy to the North held a news conference at the Blue House.

"I will certainly deliver President Moon's firm resolve to achieve a denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and genuine and permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula. My team and I will also push for 'in-depth' talks to find ways to help arrange the restart of dialogue between North Korea and the U.S."

North Korea has repeatedly said it will not put its nuclear program on a negotiating table, while the United States has made it clear that it doesn't want talks for the sake of talks and said all options, including military measures, are on the table.

After wrapping up their two-day trip to Pyongyang, the South Korean envoys will fly to Washington for follow-up discussions with the Trump administration.

Moon Connyoung, Arirang News, the Blue House.
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