A “New Era”
Global risk sentiment was bolstered on Friday by news the previous night that a new era is dawning on the Korean peninsula. Kim Jong Un, the North Korean leader, made history by becoming the first North Korean premier to set foot in South Korea in more than 60 years since the end of the Korean War.
The summit between the two countries’ leaderships was heralded as a “starting point” for peace by the North Korean leader who pledged a “new history” between the North and South. In a lighter moment, he even vowed to stop interrupting South Korean President Moon Jae-in’s sleep with missile tests shorter after the world saw the two Korean leaders shake hands.
Statement To Come
The meeting, the content of which was agreed far in advance, is aimed at bringing to an end the decades long between the two sides of the Korean border. A joint statement will be prepared following the conclusion of the meetings due to be announced together at a dinner held to mark the end of the summit.
The meeting was certainly not short on pomp and ceremony with President Jae-In coming to officially receive the North Korean leader at the Military Demarcation Line at Panmunjon. The day’s proceedings even included the two presidents planting a commemorative tree using soil from both sides of the border.
This event marks a sharp and welcomed turn I the relationship between the two countries who were practically on the brink of war just a few months ago. Pictures taken as the Korean leaders shake hands and walking alone together side by side have been welcomed on both sides of the border and by the wider global community.
Kim “Filled With Excitement”
Indeed, the tone of the conversation between the two leaders was suitably polite and respectful with Jae-In greeting Kim saying “it’s a pleasure to meet you”, Kim replying saying “Indeed, I’m so filled with excitement because of the meeting at this historic site. And I was truly moved that you have come all the way to receive me at the Military Demarcation Line at Panmunjom” and Jae-In replying saying “it was your bold and courageous decision that has allowed us to come this far”.
The key focus of the talks will be the nuclear issue with great global pressure on the North to denuclearise, however, Seoul has previously warned that any agreement resulting in Pyongynag getting rid of its nuclear weapons will be “difficult” to achieve. However, following Kim’s announcement last week that he is suspending nuclear tests, there is some hope that such an agreement can be achieved.
Watch This Space
In all, the meeting represents an extremely positive step and while many are quick to doubt the sincerity of North Korea at this point it seems that for now, both citizens and the market are happy with the events and now await the statement at the end of the talks to get a better understanding of what was discussed between the two states and where their relationship is headed next.