A day ahead of the historic summit between the leaders of North Korea and China the nuclear envoys of South Korea and the U.S. got together in Washington urging Pyeongyang to engage in talks with their leaders for the regime's complete denuclearization.
Seoul's Special Representative for Korean Peninsula peace and security affairs Lee Do-hoon and his U.S. counterpart Stephen Biegun met on Wednesday at an Atlantic Council event in Washington.
Beigun said the U.S. is not setting any conditions for the resumption of nuclear talks with Pyeongyang which have been deadlocked since the no-deal Hanoi summit in February.
"I also want to emphasize that the door is wide open to negotiations and we expect and hope that in the not too distant future we will be reengaged in this process in a substantive way."
Beigun said the U.S. was willing to discuss all commitments made by North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and U.S. President Donald Trump made at the two leaders' first summit in Singapore last year, including security guarantees for North Korea.
However, Beigun stressed that progress would require North Korea taking "meaningful and verifiable" steps on denuclearization.
Lee called on North Korea to hold a fourth summit between the leaders of the two Koreas ahead of President Trump's visit to Seoul next week.
The South Korean envoy urged the North to "grab the golden opportunity" citing President Trump's promise to provide economic aid in return for denuclearization.
He noted that, while Seoul continues to implement sanctions on the North, such punitive measures are not a "magical solution" but merely a tool to find a solution through negotiations.
Kim Ji-yeon, Arirang News.