SEOUL – Pyongyang requested on Friday, via an article published in its state media, that the dialogue to improve inter-Korean ties be held without outside interference, four days before the leaders of both countries are planning to have a new summit in Pyongyang.
“The North and South should make consistent efforts to improve their relations against any circumstances and atmosphere and faithfully carry out the Panmunjom Declaration,” the Rodong Sinmun, the official newspaper of North Korea’s Workers Party, said in an article published on Friday.
The article refers to a joint declaration signed by Kim Jong-un and Moon Jae-in at their first summit in April, in which the leaders pledged their commitment to achieve the “complete denuclearization of the peninsula” and replace a multilateral armistice, that halted the 1950-53 Korean War, with a peace treaty.
“No matter how complex and intertwined the issue of inter-Korean relations and political situations surrounding the Korean Peninsula might be,” the newspaper said that the inter-Korean dialogue “is not something that should be endorsed by anybody” and that there is no reason to pay attention to the outsiders’ opinions about the two Koreas.
The North Korean media has called on Seoul to intensify its efforts to achieve the signing of a peace treaty based on what was agreed at the historic summit in April, and criticized the US for not including this issue in their denuclearization dialogue.
The peace treaty could also include Beijing as the Chinese volunteer army was also a signatory to the 1953 armistice, and this could help speed up North Korea’s nuclear disarmament process.
The second inter-Korean summit, to be held between Sept. 18-20 in Pyongyang, is expected to unblock the US-North Korea dialogue on denuclearization issues.