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US lawmakers call on Biden to declare formal end to Korean War

This image, provided by the Korean American Public Action Committee on Monday, shows a letter sent to US President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken by a group of 23 US lawmakers to call for the US administration to consider declaring a formal end to the Korean War. (Korean American Public Action Committee)
This image, provided by the Korean American Public Action Committee on Monday, shows a letter sent to US President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken by a group of 23 US lawmakers to call for the US administration to consider declaring a formal end to the Korean War. (Korean American Public Action Committee)
WASHINGTON -- A group of US lawmakers sent a letter to President Joe Biden last week, urging his administration to quickly engage with North Korea and discuss declaring a formal end to the Korean War, an activist group said Monday.

The letter was also sent to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, according to the Korean American Public Action Committee (KAPAC).

"We wish to highlight the importance of the United States continuing its efforts to facilitate peace between South Korea and North Korea and bring about democracy for all residents of the Korean Peninsula," says the letter, released by the KAPAC.

The letter, dated Nov. 4, was signed by Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA) and 22 other lawmakers here, according to the KAPAC.

The lawmakers note South Korean President Moon Jae-in renewed his proposal to declare a formal end to the Korean War in his address to the UN General Assembly this year.

"An official end to the state of war between North Korea, South Korea, and the United States is not a concession to North Korea. Rather, it is a vital step towards peace that serves the national interest of the United States and our allies alike," said the letter.

"To that end, we urge the Administration and the Secretary of State to prioritize active diplomatic engagement with North Korea and South Korea with the goal of a binding peace agreement constituting a formal and final end to the state of war between North Korea, South Korea, and the United States."

The divided Koreas technically remain at war, as the 1950-53 war ended only with an armistice.

Seoul believes declaring a formal end to the war may help restart denuclearization negotiations with North Korea, which have stalled since 2019.

US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, however, has hinted at a possible difference between Seoul and Washington over when an end of war declaration should be made.

"We may have somewhat different perspectives on the precise sequence or timing or conditions for different steps," he said late last month when asked if the US supported Seoul's proposal for a war's end declaration.

John Kirby, spokesperson for the US Department of Defense, noted earlier Monday the North continues to ignore US overtures to date. (Yonhap)

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