President Moon Jae-in’s special envoys met with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and discussed outstanding issues, Cheong Wa Dae said Wednesday.
“The special envoys met with Kim Jong-un, and delivered (Moon’s) personal letter, and exchanged views,” Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom said.
The delegation arrived in Seoul at 9:40 p.m., after a dinner meeting hosted by the North.
|South Korea`s National Security Office chief and chief envoy to North Korea Chung Eui-yong hands President Moon Jae-in`s letter to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang on Wednesday. Cheong Wa Dae|
The special delegation, consisting of five officials led by National Security Office chief Chung Eui-yong, had arrived in Pyongyang at about 9 a.m. tasked with hammering out details of the upcoming summit and a breakthrough in denuclearization talks.
According to Cheong Wa Dae’s senior press secretary Yoon Young-chan, the envoys were greeted by Ri Son-gwon upon their arrival. Ri is the chairman of North Korea’s Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Country.
The envoys then moved on to the Koryo Hotel, where they met with Kim Yong-chol, vice chairman of North Korea’s ruling Workers’ Party.
At the hotel, the envoys held a 20-minute meeting with Kim and Ri before moving on to begin official discussions, Yoon said.
The faxed message from the envoys did not mention the location of the first meeting or the names of the participating North Korean representatives, Yoon said.
Chung is accompanied by National Intelligence Service Director Suh Hoon, NIS deputy chief Kim Sang-gyun, Vice Minister of Unification Chun Hae-sung and Yun Kun-young, the chief of Cheong Wa Dae’s state affairs planning division.
“(The envoys) will discuss ways to improve inter-Korean relations, and denuclearization talks,” Chung said at a briefing Tuesday.
He added that the dates and agenda for the inter-Korean summit that the two sides agreed to hold in Pyongyang in September would also be discussed.
“(Ways to) execute the Panmunjom Declaration to improve inter-Korean relations will be discussed, so that a more concrete agreement can be achieved at the September summit.”
At the briefing, Chung also said that Seoul considers declaring the end of Korean War vital to the denuclearization process, and that the Moon administration will continue to work toward the target of making that declaration within the year.
Ahead of the envoys’ departure, Moon held a phone conversation with US President Donald Trump late Tuesday evening, filling him on the details of the envoys’ trip.
According to Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom, Trump expressed his hopes that the delegation would return with significant results, and agreed to maintain close collaboration with Seoul on related matters.
By Choi He-suk (firstname.lastname@example.org)