Peace Network Korea
PN's Voice 139, 11.08.2018
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PN's Voice No. 139 11. 08. 2018
Small steps, Road to peace
U.S. Travel Ban to N. Korea May End this Month
A U.S. ban on its citizens traveling to North Korea is expected to expire at the end of this month. The U.S. government announced last August that U.S. passport holders were banned from traveling to North Korea for a year. The travel ban followed the death of U.S. college student Otto Warmbier, who suffered brain damage after he was detained by North Korea.
Source : Korea Times
N. Korea urges U.S. to End to Korean War
North Korea reiterated its demand Thursday for the United States to agree to declare an end to the 1950-53 Korean War, saying that it would help bring in peace and create mutual trust. Declaring an end to the Korean War is "the demand of our time" and will be the "first process" toward a peace and security guarantee, the Rodong Sinmun, the official newspaper of the Workers' Party of Korea, said in a commentary. The newspaper added that it is "abnormal" to see distrust and animosity going on between the North and the US even now, saying that it is time to take action toward declaring an end to the war. In an April summit, President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un agreed to seek such declaration this year through three-way meetings involving the two Koreas and the United States or four-way talks involving the two Koreas, the US and China. Declaring an end to the war is regarded as symbolic and political but also seen as a prelude to the replacement of the current Armistice Agreement with a peace treaty.
Source : The Korea Herald
Pompeo Asked N. Korea to Cut Nuclear Arsenal by 60 to 70%
U.S. news outlets are reporting that that the Trump administration has presented North Korea with a formal timeline for starting the process of denuclearization, but Pyongyang has rejected it several times. It was reported that Washington’s presented a plan that North Korea hands over 60 to 70 percent of its nuclear warheads within six to eight months. The U.S. or a third party would then take possession of them and remove them from the North. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has reportedly presented the plan to North Korean negotiators multiple times over the past two months, but the North’s delegation, led by senior official Kim Yong-chol, has turned down Pompeo’s proposal each time. The report said that it is unclear what concessions, if any, the U.S. would offer in exchange beyond sanctions relief or removing North Korea from the state sponsors of terrorism list.
Source : KBS News
N. Korea calls U.S. Actions on Nuke Programme 'Alarming'
North Korea's foreign minister has called US actions "alarming" as tensions over the North's nuclear programme again flared. Ri Yong-ho was responding to comments by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who urged other countries to keep up sanctions pressure on Pyongyang. A landmark summit between the two sides in Singapore in June saw the North agree to work towards denuclearisation. But details remain vague and the UN says its nuclear programme continues. At a regional forum, also in Singapore, Mr Pompeo said it was important to maintain "diplomatic and economic pressure" on North Korea to achieve "the final, fully verified denuclearisation". In response, Mr Ri said that North Korea "stands firm" in its commitment made at the June summit between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. He added: "What is alarming, however, is the insistent moves manifested within the US to go back to the old, far from its leader's intention." Mr Trump and Mr Kim made a commitment to work towards denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula, but it is still unclear how this could be achieved. The commitment was included in a one-page agreement at the end of the summit aimed at reducing regional tensions.
Source : BBC News
Humanitarian aid for N. Korea may assist denuclearization process
Providing humanitarian aid to North Korea could be used to try and aid the denuclearization process a South Korean presidential spokesman said on Wednesday, possibly hinting at a resumption of assistance for the impoverished neighbor in the near future. "(I) believe humanitarian aid is something we must do at any time and that humanitarian aid is another way to encourage denuclearization of North Korea on the other hand," Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom told reporters. Seoul suspended its humanitarian assistance to the North under the U.N. Security Council sanctions, despite setting aside at least US$8 million at the start of the year for North Korean aid. Soon after the U.N. Security Council approved the change to aid for North Korea, an official from Seoul's unification ministry said the country will seek to provide its assistance to the North at an "appropriate time."
Source : Yonhap News
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