South Korea Defers to Trump on Keeping North Korea Sanctions

U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un hold a signing ceremony at the conclusion of their summit

The stark difference in messaging has exposed a long-simmering rift between South Korea and the USA over how to deal with North Korea. These projects have been held back by the sanctions against North Korea.

As for Japan's motive for hosting the planned summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the daily said Japan is likely seeking to avoid being kept from being involved in intensifying dialogue regarding the Korean Peninsula.

Pompeo was reportedly promised a meeting with Kim in July, but no such meeting took place.

As part of the agreements reached during Moon and Kim's meetings, a liaison office between the countries opened in Kaesong last month.

But Kim had just stepped out of a new looking Rolls Royce Phantom.

"Sanctions are the very leverage we have to denuclearise the North", the editorial said.

During the summit in June, Kim was seen in a Mercedes-Maybach Pullman Guard armoured limousine flanked by security running alongside on foot.

While arguing that improved inter-Korean relations could possibly facilitate progress in larger nuclear negotiations between the US and North Korea, Cho said Seoul isn't ready yet to campaign for reduced pressure against its rival.

South Korea's main opposition conservatives said Wednesday talk of repealing the country's anti-communist National Security Act is comparable to building a highway for a North Korea takeover.

Cho refused to comment on Trump's remarks, but said Washington was not opposed to inter-Korean dialogue and exchanges, and the allies are in close consultation. Trump has insisted that sanctions against North Korea remain in effect until it shows progress towards denuclearization.

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President Trump is now preparing for a second meeting with Kim Jong Un, further building off the success of their June summit.

Kang also admitted U.S. secretary of state Mike Pompeo had been "discontent" with a military agreement between with two Koreas, saying he was not briefed sufficiently.

Despite the current mood of detente and negotiation between the Koreas, the removal of sanctions will be a hard decision for Seoul's government. "As there are many (bilateral) sanctions overlapping the United Nations ones, it won't necessarily mean the substantive lifting (of sanctions on the North)". North Korea denied it.

The Foreign Ministry said in a statement there has yet to be a "full-fledged" review on the lifting of the May 24 measures.

Even so, for many people here whose mother language is not English, Trump's use of the word "approval" is controversial.

"If the pope goes there, it will be a enormous step, a qualitative step for the Korean peninsula, for its pacification", said You, who was in Rome for a meeting of bishops from around the world known as a synod.

Moon has mostly stayed firm on sanctions despite actively engaging with North Korea and floating the possibility of huge investments and joint economic projects in return for the North's relinquishment of its nuclear weapons.

It also provides for a reduction of weaponry and guards at the border and the defining of sections of the Demilitarised Zone.

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