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U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Biegun begins his official schedule in Seoul Updated: 2020-07-08 10:02:10 KST

We begin with the latest on the nuclear diplomacy happening here in Seoul.
U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Biegun started his first official schedule in Seoul,… with a sit-down with foreign minister Kang Kyung-wha.
Will his three-day trip in Seoul possibly turn things around? We have our Hong Yoo at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
So Yoo, what have we learned from his visit to the ministry?

Mark, just moments ago, the U.S. point man for North Korea Stephen Biegun and Seoul's vice foreign minister Cho Se-young held a short press briefing after they finished their strategic meeting that covered a range of bilateral, regional and global issues.
One of the key issues discussed was the South Korea and the U.S. alliance.
Both agreed that their alliance had played a major role in ensuring peace on the Korean peninsula and in Northeast Asia.
Vice minister Cho said that they will speed up the negotiation process for the defense cost sharing to renew the Special Measures Agreement.
The vice minister added that South Korea and the U.S. will work out the details of the invitation from President Trump for President Moon Jae-in to participate in the G7 summit.
Measures to contain COVID-19 were also discussed at the meeting.
The two evaluated their cooperation in such measures like transparently sharing information about COVID-19 transmissions and not restricting entry for one another.
South Korea and the U.S. plan to continue working on developing and distributing a vaccine.
A total of 9 people took part in the meeting.
5 from South Korea and 4 from the U.S.
These included the U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary for North Korea Alex Wong and U.S. ambassador to South Korea Harry Harris.

And was there any message for the North from Biegun?

Mark, Biegun said that they discussed peace on the Korean peninsula, and that they are fully engaged to cooperate very closely with the ROK and look forward to making progress this year.
Right after the press briefing, Stephen Biegun and the special representative for Korean Peninsula peace and security affairs Lee Do-hoon sat down to discuss the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
There is another short briefing expected after this talk and all eyes are on whether Biegun has brought a message for the North.
Earlier in the morning, Stephen Biegun's first official schedule at the foreign ministry was to greet the foreign affairs minister Kang Kyung-wha.
Biegun thanked the Korean government for its cooperation in working out the details of COVID-19 preventive measures.
Foreign Minister Kang also thanked Biegun for getting tested for COVID-19 when he arrived at the Osan Air Base yesterday afternoon.
I will be back with more details on our later newscast.
Back to you Mark.
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