North Korea, US to hold working-level talks at weekend

North Korea, US to hold working-level talks at weekend
# 01 October 2019 15:43 (UTC +04:00)

North Korea and the United States have agreed to hold working-level talks on Oct. 5, North Korea’s state news agency KCNA said on Tuesday, a development that would break months of stalemate since a failed summit in February, APA reports citing Reuters.

Talks aimed at dismantling North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs have been stalled in a holding pattern since the second summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Vietnam ended without a deal.

The two leaders had agreed to restart working-level talks at a surprise meeting at the heavily-guarded border between the two Koreas in June, but the outcome remained uncertain as North Korea repeatedly launched short-range ballistic missiles and often criticized the United States for continuing joint military drills with South Korea.

The two countries agreed to have preliminary contact on Oct. 4, followed by the working level talks, KCNA said, citing a statement issued under the name of Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son Hui. It did not mention where the talks would be held, or give any more details.

“The delegates of the DPRK side are ready to enter into the DPRK-U.S. working-level negotiations,” Choe said in the statement, using North Korea’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK).

“It is my expectation that the working-level negotiations would accelerate the positive development of the DPRK-U.S. relations.”

“We welcome the agreement between North Korea and the United States to proceed with working-level negotiations on Oct. 5.” South Korea’s presidential Blue House said in a statement.

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