SKorea Pres. Urges Denuclearization 06/20 06:20
BEIJING (AP) -- South Korea's president urged North Korea on Wednesday to
present a plan with concrete steps toward denuclearization, raising the
pressure on its leader Kim Jong Un during his visit to Beijing to discuss the
outcome of his summit with U.S. President Donald Trump.
Kim left for Pyongyang later in the day after making his third visit to
China this year, according to China's official Xinhua News Agency, underscoring
the major improvement in relations between the communist neighbors.
Xinhua said Kim met Chinese President Xi Jinping for a second day of talks
on Wednesday and cited Kim as saying the visit was an opportunity to "deepen
the friendship" between the two leaders and advance bilateral ties.
Kim earlier visited an agricultural technology park and rail traffic control
center, accompanied by Beijing's top official, Cai Qi, Xinhua said.
Kim's motorcade was seen leaving the North Korean Embassy on Wednesday
afternoon as police closed off major roads and intersections in central
Beijing. Gawking pedestrians watched the passing motorcade that included Kim's
limousine --- a black Mercedes-Benz Maybach with gold emblems on the rear doors
--- as well as several minibuses and 15 motorcycle police clad in white suits.
The motorcade traveled to Beijing's airport, where the limousine entered the
charter flight terminal.
In Seoul, South Korean President Moon Jae-in urged North Korea to present
actionable plans on how it will scrap its nuclear program, and for the United
States to swiftly take unspecified corresponding measures.
"It's necessary for North Korea to present far more concrete
denuclearization plans, and I think it's necessary for the United States to
swiftly reciprocate by coming up with comprehensive measures," Moon said.
Moon's office said he made the remarks to Russian media ahead of his trip to
Moscow later this week.
Moon, who has met with Kim twice in recent months, said the North Korean
leader is willing to give up his nuclear program and focus on economic
development if he's provided with a reliable security guarantee. Moon described
Kim as "forthright," ''careful" and "polite."
China backs the North's call for a "phased and synchronous" approach to
denuclearization, as opposed to Washington's demand for an instant, total and
irreversible end to the North's nuclear programs.
A report by North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency said Kim
expressed his gratitude to Chinese President Xi Jinping for China's support
when they met on Tuesday. KCNA said Kim told Xi at a welcoming banquet that
North Korea-China ties are developing into "unprecedentedly special relations."
At his summit with Trump last week in Singapore, Kim pledged to work toward
denuclearization in exchange for U.S. security guarantees. The U.S. and South
Korea also suspended a major joint military exercise that was planned for
August in what was seen as a major victory for North Korea and its chief
allies, China and Russia.
China has touted the prospects of more trade and investment if North Korea
makes progress in talks on abandoning its nuclear weapons and long-range
That could allow the lifting of U.N. Security Council economic sanctions
that have hamstrung North Korea's foreign trade, although the U.S. insists
those measures can only be eased after the North shows it has ended its nuclear
programs. The U.S. says China is in agreement on that point, although Chinese
officials say sanctions should not be an end in themselves.