Park Jie-won (C), chief of South Korea's National Intelligence Service, is pictured after arriving at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York on Saturday. (Yonhap)
South Korea's intelligence chief is expected to return home Tuesday after a weeklong trip to the United States that apparently focused on discussions with his counterparts on North Korea, sources said.
National Intelligence Service (NIS) Director Park Jie-won had been in the US since his departure on May 26. His trip drew keen attention as it came just days after President Moon Jae-in and US President Joe Biden held a summit and agreed to use diplomacy to resolve the North's nuclear standoff.
Though his schedules in the US were not confirmed, he apparently met his counterparts, including CIA Director William Burns, and exchanged views on North Korea.
Some speculated that Park could meet North Korean diplomats while staying in New York but Unification Minister Lee In-young earlier said that such a meeting might not take place.
Park recently visited Tokyo and met his US and Japanese counterparts -- Hiroaki Takizawa, Japan's cabinet intelligence director, and US Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines -- to reportedly discuss three-way cooperation on North Korea.
The NIS declined to comment on Park's overseas trips. (Yonhap)