S. Korea: Idea of North Destroying Its Nukes Is Problematic

South Korea suggests Olympics might be a good place to start denuclearization discussions
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 14, 2017 9:55 AM CST
S. Korea Wants Denuclearization Talks at Olympics
South Korea's President Moon Jae-in speaks in Manila in the Philippines on Monday.   (Noel Celis/Pool Photo via AP)

Even if North Korea were on board, it would be "realistically difficult" to destroy the country's nuclear capabilities because they're so developed, according to South Korean President Moon Jae-in. It's for this reason that the international community must pressure North Korea into talks as soon as possible, including through use of sanctions, Moon said Tuesday, per Reuters. Moon added the PyeongChang Winter Olympics kicking off in February might provide a rendezvous point for talks, reports Yonhap News. But though the North has said it may be open to dialogue, it hasn't responded to invitations to take part in the Olympics. It has also said it will "never put the issue related to the supreme interests of the DPRK and security of its people on the bargaining table," per Reuters.

Moon's comments followed similar ones from South Korea's foreign minister over the weekend. Speaking from the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Vietnam on Saturday, Kang Kyung-wha said two months without any nuclear tests from the North was a good sign, reports Bloomberg. But South Korea, which is ensuring "a robust military preparedness for whatever contingency might arise," must see "a clear sign of a change of course" before it agrees to "have North Korea at the table discussing denuclearization," Kang added. She said South Korean and US officials were discussing what that sign might be. A day earlier, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson suggested talks would follow a request from Kim Jong Un and a "relative period of quiet." (More North Korea stories.)

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