President Moon Jae-in's top security adviser, Chung Eui-yong, returned from Washington Friday afternoon after meeting with his U.S. counterpart, John Bolton.
According to the South Korean ambassador to the U.S, Cho Yoon-je, Chung's first meeting with the newly appointed U.S. National Security Adviser took place at the White House and lasted for about an hour.
Also in Washington was the national security adviser of Japan, Shotaro Yachi, but Cho confirmed that there was no three-way meeting; Bolton met with his Korean and Japanese counterparts separately.
According to the spokesperson for the White House National Security Council, Chung and Bolton agreed to continue working closely together in preparation for their summits with North Korea.
Earlier this week, Seoul suggested establishing a direct communication channel between Chung and Bolton for that purpose.
Before leaving Washington, Chung stressed the importance of his meeting with Bolton.
"The success of both the inter-Korean summit and the U.S.-North Korea summit is important, so we had a wide-ranging exchange of views on various ways to make them successful and peacefully achieve the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula."
He also said his meeting with Bolton was helpful to the denuclearization goal, but he did not disclose any details about the roadmap being negotiated or whether they discussed the location of the Washington-Pyongyang summit.
President Trump's appointment of Bolton has raised concerns in Seoul that the U.S. could consider military action against the North if the Trump-Kim summit goes badly.
Bolton, a former U.S. ambassador to the UN, recently argued for a preventive strike on North Korea, even though he stressed that it's not his preferred option.
Hwang Hojun, Arirang News.