S. Korean president floats economic concessions for upcoming Kim-Trump summit in Hanoi

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Published on 20 Feb 2019, 4:51
문 대통령, 트럼프 대통령에 "비핵화 상응조치로 한국 활용해달라"

A week before the second high-stakes summit between the leaders of North Korea and the U.S.,... President Moon Jae-in has proposed providing North Korea with sanctions relief..... while talking over the phone with his American counterpart.
Our Presidential office correspondent Shin Se-min starts us off.

President Moon Jae-in told President Trump that Seoul is willing to open economic engagement with North Korea if it will speed up Pyeongyang's denuclearization process.
During the first phone conversation between the leaders in nearly six months on Tuesday night-- President Moon reportedly said (quote-unquote) that "we are determined to take up the role if President Trump asks,... if that's the way to lessen the U.S. burden."
South Korea's top office hinted that Seoul and Washington will share the pursuit of joint inter-Korean projects,... something it will have to begin with sanctions removal as a corresponding measure to Pyeongyang's progress on denuclearization.
For Seoul, the bottom line is encouraging Washington to actively offer sanctions relief to the North during next week's second Kim-Trump summit in Hanoi.
Economic engagements with the North could mean anything from reconnecting railways and roads between the divided Koreas to tour packages to visit the North-- things that have been on ice as the U.S. kept its suffocating sanctions in place.
It's the first time President Moon has floated the idea of economic concessions to boost the prospects for a successful summit,... and also the first time since the South Korean leader's call for European support received a stony response late last year.
A matter of hours after the phone conversation,... President Trump told reporters in the Oval Office about the North's economic potential,... if it chooses the right path.

"I really believe that North Korea can be a tremendous economic power when this is solved. Their location between Russia, China and South Korea is unbelievable."

Expressing high hopes for the summit,... President Trump said he's in no rush to denuclearize North Korea-- although he's ultimately aiming for it.
He also noted that he isn't overly concerned about the current situation as the regime isn't testing nuclear bombs or launching missiles... and sanctions will remain in place until there's tangible progress.
Counting down to another historic summit between Kim and Trump,... the leaders of South Korea and the U.S. pledged to stay in close touch before and after the Hanoi meeting,... perhaps even arranging another sit down between the allies in the near future.
Shin Se-min, Arirang News.

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