In a last-ditch attempt to restart talks with North Korea before his term ends next year, South Korean President Moon Jae-in is calling for a declaration that could eventually end a state of war that has technically lasted since the 1950s.
South Korea and a U.S.-led U.N. force are technically still at war with North Korea since the 1950-1953 Korean War ended in an armistice rather than a peace treaty, and Seoul sees an "end of war declaration" as a way to build trust, restart stalled denuclearisation talks, and eventually secure a lasting peace agreement.
Such a declaration is seen as a less politically fraught issue than other points of contention, such as North Korea's nuclear weapons.
Let's talk about it.
We have our senior North Korea analyst Dr. Go Myong-hyun live in the studio with us.
Dr. Go, critics fear a declaration could undermine the South Korea, U.S. alliance or weaken international pressure over the North's weapons programs, and both Koreas have failed to follow through on previous efforts to end the war. What are your thoughts on this?
When asked about the South's proposal for an end of war declaration, White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said while the United States agreed with South Korea on the need for diplomacy, the two may have a different perspective when it comes to the timing, conditions, or sequence of different steps. What could this mean?
Meanwhile, South Korean President Moon Jae-in leaves for the G20 Rome tomorrow but he'll make a stop by at the Vatican to meet the Pope. The Pope has made clear on various occasions that he is willing to make a visit to North Korea for peace on the peninsula. Back in 2018, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un reportedly extended an invited to the Pope. Can we expect a papal visit to Pyeongyang anytime soon and what could that culminate in?
South Korea and Russia commemorate the 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations South Korea's chief nuclear negotiator, NOH Kyu-duk, met with his Russian counterpart, Igor Morgulov, in Moscow earlier this month to discuss ways to engage with the North. Now, how will the top diplomats' meeting in Moscow progress to bring Pyongyang back to dialogue since the collapse of the Hanoi summit in 2019?
Alright, it was Dr. Go Myong-hyun. Thanks for your insights.