Back To Top

S. Korea, US hold regular defense talks amid conciliatory signals from N. Korea

South Korea and the United States were to begin two days of biannual defense talks in Seoul on Monday to discuss regional security situations and pending alliance issues, the defense ministry said.

During the 20th Korea-US Integrated Defense Dialogue (KIDD), the two sides plan to discuss "major pending security issues," such as the assessment of the security situation on the Korean Peninsula and the policy coordination on North Korea, according to the ministry.

The meeting comes two days after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's sister, Kim Yo-jong, said the North could declare a formal end to the 1950-53 Korean War as suggested by South Korea and even discuss an inter-Korean summit if Seoul drops what she called a "hostile policy" against Pyongyang.

Earlier on Friday, US State Department spokesman Ned Price said the US has "no hostile intent" toward the North, urging Pyongyang to respond to its calls for dialogue.

Also on the table during this week's meeting will be the conditions-based transition of wartime operational control (OPCON) of South Korean troops from Washington to Seoul and ways to strengthen defense cooperation between the two countries, the ministry said.

Deputy Defense Minister Kim Man-ki and Siddharth Mohandas, US deputy assistant secretary of defense for East Asia, will represent the two sides, respectively.

Launched in 2011, KIDD is a comprehensive defense forum between Seoul and Washington that usually meets twice a year. The last session took place in Washington in May. (Yonhap)

Korea Herald daum