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North Korea turns down invite for Kim to attend South Korea ASEAN summit

by on November 21, 2019
 

The statement accused South Korea of failing to implement agreements from past summits between Kim and Moon by depending on the United States.

“As nothing was achieved in implementing the agreements … the north-south summit for the mere form’s sake would be pointless,” KCNA said.

“Not content with sustaining losses from dependence on the United States, the south side made an offer for discussing the north-south relations in the theatre of multi-lateral co-operation. This makes us only dubious.”

The two Koreas undertook a flurry of diplomacy including three summits last year, during which Moon and Kim agreed to improve ties and restart stalled business initiatives.

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But there has been no significant progress amid tightening sanctions aimed at the North’s nuclear and missile programmes, and stalled denuclearisation talks after Kim’s failed second summit with U.S. President Donald Trump.

Pyongyang has stepped up criticism against Seoul and Washington in recent months for their joint military drills and the South’s purchase of U.S. weapons designed to fend off North Korean threats.

“North Korea now considers summits without payment for co-operation as empty diplomacy that merely helps Moon and Trump raise domestic political support,” said Leif-Eric Easley, who teaches international studies at Ewha Womans University in Seoul.

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