US, South Korea May Cut Exercises Short for Trump-Kim Summit

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"This morning, North Korea sent a message through a communication channel in Panmunjom agreeing to our suggestion made on the 22nd to hold high-level inter-Korea talks", the ministry said in a statement.

During inter-Korean talks on Tuesday, the two Koreas agreed to hold South Korean cultural performances in the North Korean capital featuring cross-generational stars, including veteran pop legend Cho Yong-pil, the five-member girl band Red Velvet and Seohyun, a former member of the girl group Girls' Generation.

South Korea's President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un plan to hold a meeting in late April, the third summit of its kind after meetings in 2000 and 2007.

North Korea had been silent on the proposed Trump-Kim summit since Trump agreed to the talks on March 8, 2018.

A South Korean advance team to North Korea is expected to inspect venues for a Seoul art troupe's April concerts in Pyongyang on Friday and return home as scheduled over the weekend, a government official said.

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North Korea has officially acknowledged a change in relations with the USA, but rejected any notion that President Donald Trump's sanctions and global pressure played a role in advancing diplomatic talks.

The Korean Central News Agency, a North Korean propaganda outlet, said the sudden conciliatory moves were an "expression of self-confidence" by a regime that already "has acquired everything it desires", a possible reference to the buildup of its nuclear and ballistic missile arsenals. The two countries conduct this drill annually; however, they announced that the drilling exercises would be shortened this time around because of the diplomatic thaw with North Korea.

"Holding a North Korea-U.S. summit following a South-North Korea summit itself is a historical event". However, if we closely examine the Trump's approach towards North Korea and put the things together, it can be observed that Trump's decision to talk with Kim is not an isolated and spontaneous act. The stronger the United States pressure, the stronger the DPRK (North Korea)...

North Korean state media have not yet directly mentioned the summits.

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