North Korea's Sweden visit prompts speculation on USA summit

Pauline Gross
March 17, 2018

South Korea will make a request to hold high-level talks with North Korea over a planned summit meeting of their leaders, the chief of staff of South Korean President Moon Jae-in said on Friday.

North Korea's foreign minister Ri Yong Ho is visiting Sweden for high-level talks with his counterpart Margot Wallström, spurring speculation over the Scandinavian country's role in arranging proposed talks between the USA and Kim Jong Un's regime.

North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho is in Stockholm for two days of talks with Wallstrom.

Sweden has been cited as a potential location for a meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. "We are hoping that if we can use our role and also our contacts there, we will put it to the best use, and then it's for the parties to decide".

Ri is set to meet Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom later Thursday or on Friday.

"They met this morning and discussed the same issues that are being discussed during this trip, such as the security situation", he said.

Pyongyang said Ri Yong-ho's trip was for "bilateral relations and issues of mutual concern".

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Earlier, Lofven had said that Stockholm is willing to host the historic summit.

Sweden has a long history of mediating between Washington and Pyongyang.

Early this week, the Swedish Foreign Ministry said the two ministers would discuss Sweden's consular responsibilities on behalf of the U.S., Canada and Australia, without disclosing the details.

The Swedish ministry said a statement summarizing the talks will be made available Friday.

"I've talked to North Korea and I sent a single message to them, which was that this was an unbelievable opportunity for both sides and they need to respond", Yun told CNN. Trump accepted an invitation from Kim when a South Korean delegation delivered it verbally in Washington. It provides consular services for the U.S.in North Korea.

Mr Ri's visit to Stockholm, where he once served as a diplomat at the North Korean embassy, has been shrouded in secrecy. Trump has agreed to meet Kim by May.

Other reports by GizPress

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