Korean Leaders Agree to 'Total Denuclearization'

'A new history starts now,' Kim says
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 27, 2018 5:56 AM CDT
Korean Leaders Agree to 'Total Denuclearization'
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, left, and South Korean President Moon Jae-in embrace each other after signing on a joint statement at the border village of Panmunjom in the Demilitarized Zone, South Korea, Friday, April 27, 2018.   (Korea Summit Press Pool via AP)

"A new history starts now," Kim Jong Un wrote in the guest book at the Peace House in the DMZ before talks with South Korea's President Moon Jae-in began, and the day's developments were historic indeed. In a joint statement, the two leaders pledged to cease all hostilities, establish regular lines of communication, and work with the US and China to declare a formal end to the Korean War by the end of this year, the Guardian reports. The leaders also pledged to work for "complete denuclearization" of the Korean Peninsula and to reunify families divided by the war. "I hope this will be an opportunity for the two Korean peoples to move freely from North to South," Kim said. "We need to take responsibility for our own history."

The leaders pledged to make the DMZ a "peace zone" and to cease the broadcasting of propaganda across the zone by May 1. Military talks will be held next month to discuss reducing tensions, reports the AP, which notes that the declaration did not outline any concrete steps toward denuclearization. A South Korean official tells Reuters that Kim jokingly apologized to Moon for waking him up with missile tests and issued an invitation to visit Pyongyang later this year, which the South Korean leader accepted. In a tweet early Friday, President Trump, who is expected to meet Kim by early June, praised the "historic meeting," adding: "Good things are happening, but only time will tell!" (At the start of the summit, Kim made history with a step over the border.)

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