During a second day of meetings with Moon Jae-in, the first South Korean leader to visit Pyongyang in 11 years, Kim agreed to dismantle a key missile test site under the watch of global inspectors.
Kim and Moon embraced at Pyongyang’s global airport – where the North Korean leader had supervised missile launches a year ago as tensions mounted.
Kim reconfirmed the importance of close cooperation in achieving “complete” denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula, which was agreed in June between him and U.S. President Donald Trump in return for security guarantees from Washington.
Pompeo cited North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s decision to “complete the previously announced dismantlement of the Tongchang-ri site in the presence of USA and worldwide inspectors as a step toward the final fully verified denuclearization of North Korea”.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un said he will also visit the South Korean capital of Seoul by the end of the year.
Moon said that this would require corresponding measures from the United States in line with the June declaration agreed by Trump and Kim.
The Tonchang-ri missile pad is now expected to be closed permanently, but the dismantlement of the Yongbyon nuclear facility will be dependent on U.S. actions.
The leaders agreed to set up another buffer zone in the Yellow Sea where they would suspend maritime drills and the firing of guns, as well as a no-fly zone in border areas to prevent accidental plane clashes.
Moon landed in North Korea Tuesday morning.
North Korea is seeking relief from crippling worldwide sanctions.
Analysts had said Kim’s pledges could inject new momentum into stalled nuclear negotiations between Washington and Pyongyang and lay the groundwork for another Kim-Trump meeting. Whatever happens down the road between Kim and Trump, or Kim and whoever follows Trump, since North Korean leaders tend to outlast American presidents, this is to be regarded as a moment of triumph. They agreed that Kim would visit the South in the near future.
Moon said the steps were part of an agreement to turn the Korean peninsula into a “land of peace without nuclear weapons and nuclear threats”.
“We are not afraid of future challenges”, he said.
Speaking to the media Wednesday after a brief signing ceremony, Kim and Moon vowed to bring peace to the Korean Peninsula once and for all, something they first committed to at their April summit.
The Defense Ministry official said consultations are underway with the UNC, highlighting that establishing a no-fly zone would not weaken the allies’ surveillance abilities to monitor North Korea’s military movement.
“We’re starting to get some meat on the bones now”, said Daniel Tudor, co-author of “North Korean Confidential”. The leaders emphasized that they understood “practical progress” was needed to move forward, but many North Korea policy experts expressed doubt about Kim’s intentions.
Moon and Kim had a two-hour-long talks Tuesday afternoon at the headquarters of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK).
North Korea was expected to hold another mass spectacle, attended by South Korea’s president, on Wednesday.
The neighbors will gradually withdraw guard posts and equipment in a move to transform the world’s most heavily fortified border into a no-weapons area, the agreement said.
Mr Trump has welcomed the result of the outcome of the summit on Twitter already and lauded Kim Jong-un’s gesture to leave nuclear-capable missiles out of the 9 September military parade to commemorate the country’s 70th founding anniversary.