June 08, 2018 10:34
President Moon Jae-in will not be joining his U.S. counterpart Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore next Tuesday.
Cheong Wa Dae officials had for some reason been clinging to the remote prospect but admitted Thursday that it "appears impossible" given that there has been no word from the U.S.
Moon had mooted the idea of joining the two leaders in Singapore to discuss formally ending the Korean War but got no traction in Washington. Another Cheong Wa Dae official was not yet ready to give up. "The chances are becoming slim, but we can't say definitively that the three-way summit is on or off," he said.
The Foreign Ministry said there are no plans for Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha to travel to Singapore. National Intelligence Service chief Suh Hoon went to the city state recently, but Cheong Wa Dae said that was to prepare for the Asia Security Summit there "in an unofficial capacity."
Despite being jilted, the South Korean government plans to set up a press center in Singapore for up to 500 reporters.
Cheong Wa Dae now hopes to arrange a three-way meeting at some other time. Foreign Ministry spokesperson Noh Kyu-duk said, "South Korea, North Korea and the U.S. will continue close negotiations to formally declare the end of the Korean War."
Seoul and Pyongyang agreed to formally end the war, which only stopped with a truce in 1953, before the end of this year.
Meanwhile, Moon took Thursday off at a vacation home in South Chungcheong Province but returned to Cheong Wa Dae in the afternoon.
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