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Towards Engagement with North Korea: Implications of the South Korean Presidential Election

Moon Jae-in, the newly elected leader of South Korea, moved swiftly to mend ties with China on Thursday, announcing plans to dispatch a delegation to Beijing to resolve a festering dispute over the deployment of a USA missile-defense system in his country.

Chinese President Xi Jinping also called to congratulate the new South Korean leader on Thursday, the pres-idential office said, adding it was the first time a Chinese leader had ever done so.

North Korea’s Ministry of State Security has suggested that the plan was thwarted last month, and state media have been running stories on the topic since last week. He asked them to help in curbing North Korea’s nuclear program and both promised to. While last week North Korea asked the US and South Korea to “execute” those involved in the purported plot, on Thursday, it demanded that the countries hand over the “terror suspects”.

South Koreans elected Moon Jae-In on Tuesday, with 41.1% of the vote and thus complete the post-Park Geun-Hye impeachment transition through peaceful and democratic means.

PUST insisted that the arrests of its professors are “not connected in any way” with the university’s work and explained that its sole goal is to help North Korea’s future elite gain the skills needed to modernize the nation and engage with the outside world.

Xi told Moon that China has always upheld the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula and that the nuclear issue should be resolved through talks, which are in everyone’s interests, according to the state television report.

The only individual suspect so far named by North Korea is a resident of Pyongyang who allegedly was bribed, brainwashed and cajoled by foreign agents to carry out the assassination plot.

Trump, who spoke with Moon on Wednesday, this month opened the door to meeting North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, saying he would be “honored” to meet Kim – but only under the right circumstances. Although it is too early to speculate, such efforts between Seoul and Beijing may entice North Korea to reconsider dormant frameworks such as the Six Party Talks.

South Korea is highly appreciative of China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative, and expects it to bring prosperity to countries and regions along its routes, including South Korea and China, Moon said.

Experts believe that the North’s latest calls are aimed at getting the new South Korean government to shift its direction from that of the previous government which focused on pressuring and sanctioning Pyongyang.

The election of South Korea’s new president, Moon Jae-in, has given fresh hope of a thawing in relations with China, which have recently been strained due to the deployment of a controversial missile defence system in South Korea.

North Korea has a history of bombastic propaganda featuring unfounded claims.

The U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee and other persecution watchdog groups have warned that religious freedom is non-existent in the isolated Pacific nation, with as many as 100,000 people forced to work in back-breaking prison camps.

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