Top diplomats of Korea, U.S. likely to hold talks this month
Published : 2013-03-12 20:34
Updated : 2013-03-12 20:34
Top diplomats of South Korea and the United States are expected to hold their first bilateral talks as early as this month, a senior Seoul official said Tuesday, as North Korea ramps up tensions with its increasingly menacing language.
Ahead of a planned summit set for early May between President Park Geun-hye and U.S. President Barack Obama, officials from the allies are in the midst of arranging a schedule and agenda for talks between Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, the official said.
“The U.S. is our most important partner in terms of security,” the foreign ministry official said on the condition of anonymity.
“Preparations are under way to meet with the U.S. side as soon as possible.”
Though a date has not been fixed yet, talks between Yun and Kerry are likely to take place in late March or early April, according to the official.
Earlier in the day, presidential spokesman Yoon Chang-jung said Park “plans to visit the United States at the invitation of President Barack Obama, and South Korea and the U.S. are conducting discussions with an early May visit in mind.”
North Korea has ramped up its bellicose rhetoric after the U.N. Security Council adopted a tougher resolution to punish the North for conducting its third nuclear test last month.
Escalating its war of words, North Korea cut off a Red Cross hotline with South Korea on Monday, after Seoul and Washington kicked off their annual joint military drills on the Korean Peninsula. (Yonhap News)