South Korea's nuclear envoy expects North Korea and the United States to resume their nuclear negotiations within this month.
Arriving in Washington for talks with his U.S. counterpart and other officials, Seoul's Special Representative for Korean Peninsula Peace and Security Affairs, Lee Do-hoon, told reporters:
"On September 9th, the North's Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui said Pyeongyang is returning to talks. Therefore, the talks are likely to take place soon."
He added the so-called 'New York channel' is always open so the North and the U.S. can communicate whenever they want to.
The 'New York channel' refers to discussions between the North Korean mission to the UN and the U.S. State Department.
Seoul's nuclear envoy highlighted that the U.S. wants to first sit down with North Korea and have a candid dialogue on what exactly the regime wants.
Since April, Pyeongyang has been demanding that Washington come up with what it calls a "new calculation."
That "new calculation" has been thought as sanctions relief but earlier this week, a senior North Korean diplomat wrote in a statement that the regime wants a security guarantee.
"Recently, North Korea has shifted its focus from lifting sanctions to getting a security guarantee. We are communicating and analyzing a lot with the U.S."
The U.S. has recently been signalling North Korea that it's ready to talk, with its nuclear envoy continuously stressing that Washington is willing to be flexible in these negotiations.
President Trump also said Wednesday that a "new method" could be very good for talks with North Korea, criticizing his former National Security Advisor John Bolton and the so-called Libyan model he promoted.
Oh Jung-hee, Arirang News.