Published: Mon, February 12, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

Pence to push S. Korea toward more hawkish N. Korea policy

Pence to push S. Korea toward more hawkish N. Korea policy

"We will continue to urge North Korea to take specific action toward resolving the issues of abductions and nuclear and missile development under close cooperation among Japan, South Korea and the United States".

These officials said that while Pence did not greet Kim Yong Nam, he didn't deliberately skip over him. Pence said to reporters that President Moon had given Washington a strong reassurance of their support for the harsh measures to pile pressure on Kim Jong Un and his administration so that he can abandon his weapons program and finally achieve a fully denuclearized Korean peninsula.

The Samjiyon Orchestra, consisting of a total of 140 singers, musicians and other members, arrived Tuesday in the eastern port city of Donghae aboard the North Korean ferry Mangyongbong-92.

The spectacle was greeted with apparent joy by South Korean President Moon Jae-in and his guest, Kim Yo Jong, sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

After the game ended with an 8-0 score, Moon, Bach and North Korean officials went down to the bench and had a talk with the Korean hockey players.

Moon's office said Kim's sister, Kim Yo Jong, came to the South as his special envoy.

North Korea state media on Friday confirmed the sacking of the country's military chief Hwang Pyong So, after Southern reports said he had been fired for corruption.

"The grievances that the world has about North Korea are very legitimate", Frank Jannuzi, an expert on East Asia at the Mansfield Foundation told the AP.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Friday praised Olympic values after a meeting with International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Thomas Bach ahead of Friday's Pyeongchang Winter Games opening ceremony. Speaking to NBC's "Nightly News" on Thursday, the vice president continued to stress that the United States would protect itself from North Korean nuclear threats by taking whatever "action is necessary to defend our homeland".

Pence had said all week that if he met with the North Koreans, he would deliver a tough message.

Kim Yo-jong and the North's ceremonial head of state, Kim Yong-nam, made up the most senior delegation from Pyongyang o visit the South since the Korean War in the 1950s. "He cheered for the USA", a U.S. official said, via CNN.

Pence, who is leading the U.S. delegation to the Olympics, briefly encountered Kim Yong-nam at the Games but the two tried to avoid directly facing each other.

If Moon accepts Pyongyang's invitation and meets with the North Korean leader, it would be the 3rd inter-Korean summit.

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