NKorea media hails summit

SEOUL – North Korea’s state news agency on Saturday called the inter- Korean summit a turning point for the Korean peninsula, while US Pres­ident Donald Trump said he would maintain sanctions pressure on Pyongyang ahead of his own unprec­edented meeting with Kim Jong Un.

The North’s KCNA news agency separately released the joint state­ment North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in presented on Friday after the first summit in more than a decade between the two Koreas.

Mr Kim and Mr Moon had pledged to work for “complete denuclearisa­tion” of the Korean peninsula and agreed on a common goal of a “nucle­ar-free” peninsula.

“At the talks both sides had a candid and open-hearted exchange of views on the matters of mutual concern including the issues of improving the north-south relations, ensuring peace on the Korean Peninsula and the denuclearisation of the penin­sula,” KCNA said, reporting that the night wrapped up with a dinner with an “amicable atmosphere overflowing with feelings of blood relatives.”

A day after the meeting between Mr Kim and Mr Moon produced dra­matic images and a sweeping declara­tion of goodwill, South Korean media were replaying striking scenes of the two leaders and North Korea’s main state newspaper published a multi-page spread with more than 60 photos from the visit.

On Saturday afternoon, North Ko­rean state TV broadcast its first foot­age of the summit.

Most of the specific commitments outlined in the official declaration focused on inter-Korean relations and did not clear up the question of whether Pyongyang is willing to give up its arsenal of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles.

In their coverage of the summit, North Korean state media made rare mentions of the denuclearisation discussion, but did not go into specif­ics, instead highlighting the broad themes of peace, prosperity, and Ko­rean unity.

The declaration earned guarded but optimistic praise from world leaders, including Mr Trump, who said on Friday that only time would tell, but that he did not think Mr Kim was “playing.”

“It’s never gone this far. This en­thusiasm for them wanting to make a deal … We are going to hopefully make a deal.”

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