The United States government confirmed on Tuesday that it will resume talks with North Korea on the matter of nuclear weapons “within the next week”, AFP reported, quoting State Department Spokesperson Morgan Ortagus. However, she added that she had no more information about the meeting.

North Korea’s Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son Hui said in a statement that the talks will be held on October 5. The US and North Korea agreed to have “preliminary contact” on October 4 and hold negotiations the following day, she said.

“It is my expectation that the working-level negotiations would accelerate the positive development of the DPRK-US relations,” Choe said, without revealing the venue of the talks or the identities of the participants.

South Korea’s presidential Blue House welcomed the announcement of talks. “We hope to see the realisation of practical steps towards permanent peace regime and complete denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula through the upcoming talks,” Spokesperson Ko Min-jung said.

US-North Korea dialogue

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump met for the first time on June 12, 2018, in Singapore, following which Kim committed to the “complete denuclearisation” of the Korean Peninsula. In response, Trump announced the suspension of Washington’s “very provocative” joint military exercises with South Korea.

Trump and Kim held a second meeting in Vietnam in February this year but it ended abruptly following a disagreement over sanctions imposed on North Korea. In March, North Korea promised further negotiations on its nuclear weapons with the United States despite both countries failing to reach a deal at the Hanoi summit.

However, tensions escalated in May when Pyongyang fired short-range missiles for the first time since November 2017. This was followed by the testing of more ballistic missiles in July. US-South Korea military exercises also resumed in the aftermath of the May tests.

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