North Korea's Kim 'to advance' closer ties with South

North Korea's Kim 'to advance' closer ties with South

The special envoy's press statement also stated that the North "clearly stated the will to denuclearize", and that the regime considers nuclear weapons unnecessary provided that its safety is guaranteed.

The most senior South Koreans to travel to North Korea for more than a decade met leader Kim Jong Un Monday, a Seoul official said, the latest step in an Olympics-driven rapprochement on the divided peninsula.

That meeting would be held in Panmunjom, the "truce village" that straddles the border between North and South.

USA president Donald Trump dubbed Kim "Little Rocket Man" and boasted about the size of his own nuclear button, while the North Korean leader called Trump a "mentally deranged U.S. dotard". They landed in Pyongyang on Monday, tasked with brokering talks between North Korea and Washington after months of high tensions between the two nuclear-armed nations.

According to the South Korean presidential Blue House, the talks and banquet with Moon's special envoys were held at the headquarters of the Workers' Party in Pyongyang.

China, North Korea's closest thing to an ally, is applauding a visit by a South Korean delegation to the North's capital.

North Korea, which has been developing nuclear-tipped missiles capable of reaching the United States, has vowed never to give up what it calls an essential deterrent against U.S. hostility.

According to Chung, the two sides also made a decision to establish a hot line to ease military tension and for close communication, adding the two leaders will hold their first phone conversation using the hot line ahead of the summit.

Chung said in Seoul before leaving on Monday that his team would deliver the South Korean president's wish to bring about denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula and permanent peace.

67 killed in PNG quake
Professor Petley said there was an urgent need to assess the risk of collapse and determine how many people lived downstream. Earthquakes are common in Papua New Guinea , which sits on the Pacific Ring of Fire, a hotspot for seismic activity.

Reviving meaningful dialogue with the North is critical for the policies of Moon, who insists Seoul should be in the "driver's seat" in worldwide efforts to deal with the North Korean nuclear problem.

North Korea is willing to hold talks with the United States on denuclearisation and will suspend nuclear tests while those talks are under way, the South said on Tuesday after a delegation returned from the North where it met leader Kim Jong Un.

Evidently, South Korea is keen to make a diplomatic solution with North Korea's nuclear weapon program.

To that end, the South Korean delegation in Pyongyang will "have an in-depth discussion on measures to continue various talks between North Korea and the worldwide community, including the United States", according to Chung.

The meeting reportedly ended with a satisfactory "result", which includes details of an inter-Korean summit, the spokesman said.

The South Korean delegation's visit follows two months of easing tensions with North Korea and is the first of its kind since President Moon's liberal government was sworn in past year.

Asked if the topic had come up, a senior Blue House official was quoted by Yonhap as saying: "I assume so". Trump responded with threats and forceful rhetoric, mocking Kim as "Little Rocket Man" and inflaming tensions.

South Korea will request an exemption from heavy tariffs that the United States is expected to impose on imports of foreign steel.

Seoul's chief envoy Chung will return to the South Tuesday to brief the presidential office on the trip's outcomes before heading to the United States to keep Washington informed.