The US State Department on September 10 informed that special envoy for North Korea, Sung Kim will be visiting Tokyo, Japan on September 13-15. According to a press release, during his visit, Kim is expected to discuss the denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula. He will join a trilateral meeting with the Japanese Director-General for Asian and Oceanian Affairs Funakoshi Takehiro and Republic of Korea (ROK) Special Representative for Korean Peninsula Peace and Security Affairs Noh Kyu-duk.
“Special Representative Kim will also meet with other senior Japanese officials to discuss cooperation on a broad range of issues, including the U.S. commitment to the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and the immediate resolution of the abductions issue,” the press release read.
“Special Representative Kim’s travel to Tokyo for trilateral and bilateral meetings underscores ongoing U.S. coordination with and commitment to our allies on DPRK issues,” it added.
According to ANI, back in August, Kim had visited South Korea to meet with Security Affairs Representative Noh Kyu-duk. Back then, he discussed humanitarian aid to North Korea and military exercises by the allies. It is worth noting that the Biden administration and South Korea remain committed to ongoing close collaboration on North Korea issues as they seek complete denuclearisation and permanent peace on the Korean peninsula.
US- North Korea relations
Meanwhile, Kim’s travel to Japan comes amid dwindling hopes for a rapid resumption of talks and rising tensions over continuing military drills between the US and South Korea. North Korea has labelled the drills as a drill for an invasion and has warned unspecified responses that will put the US and South Korea in a “security crisis”. It is worth noting that since the collapse of a summit between former President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in 2019, when the Americans rejected the North’s demand for a major easing of economic sanctions in exchange for a partial reduction of its nuclear capabilities, talks between the two countries have stalled.
Kim Jong Un has since pledged to bolster his country’s nuclear deterrent while urging his people to stay resilient in a struggle for economic self-dependence in the face of US pressure. His government has so far rejected the Biden administration’s overtures for talks, demanding that Washington abandon its “hostile” policies first.