Trump, Moon to convene for summit in Washington

President Moon Jae-in (R) speaks during a Cabinet meeting Tuesday to approve the Pyongyang Joint Declaration and the military agreement, which Moon and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un adopted in their summit in September. Photo by Yonhap

SEOUL, March 29 (UPI) — South Korea’s presidential Blue House said Friday President Moon Jae-in is to meet with U.S. President Donald Trump at their first summit since U.S.-North Korea talks collapsed in Vietnam.

Yoon Do-hwan, a presidential communications officer, told reporters at a press briefing the next U.S.-South Korea summit is to take place on April 10-11 in Washington.

Moon is to visit the U.S. capital for two days, accompanied by first lady Kim Jung-sook.

The White House in a separate statement confirmed the summit would take place on April 11.

“President Trump and President Moon will discuss the latest developments regarding the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea as well as bilateral matters,” the White House said. “The alliance between the United States and the Republic of Korea remains the linchpin of peace and security on the Korean Peninsula and in the region.”

Trump and Moon are also meeting for the first time since Nov. 20, when they spoke on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

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Seoul has been concerned the breakdown of U.S.-North Korea talks could negatively affect the thaw in ties with Pyongyang.

The city of Seoul had recently sought the co-hosting of the 2032 Summer Olympics with Pyongyang, but talks of engagement have taken a back seat to more pressing concerns, including North Korea’s possible change of policy. Last week, Pyongyang withdrew from the inter-Korea liaison office in Kaesong, only to return days later following a tweet from Trump he opposed additional sanctions.

North Korea recently held a meeting of its Olympic committee at the People’s Palace of Culture in Pyongyang, according to Workers’ Party paper Rodong Sinmun.

The committee said Kim is “paying close attention” to the development of sports in the country, according to the Rodong.

The paper also said North Korean athletes made “illuminating achievements” at the 18th Asian Games, and at the 2018 World Weightlifting Championships.

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