Kang calls for continued support from United States congressional leaders on Korea issues

Kang calls for continued support from United States congressional leaders on Korea issues

The talks in Stockholm will also involve Sweden's consular responsibilities in North Korea, which include representing United States diplomatic interests.

In talks that started Thursday and are expected to continue on Friday, the North Korean and Swedish delegations will discuss several topics, including the security situation on the Korean Peninsula, a spokesperson for the Swedish Foreign Ministry said.

Deva, the European Parliament member, hailed Trump's decision to accept an invitation from Kim as "an unprecedented display of diplomacy".

Japan was led by Kenji Kanasugi, director general of the Japanese Foreign Ministry's Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau, and Shuji Yuge, director in charge of worldwide policies at the Japanese Defense Ministry.

If the summit actually takes place, it will be the first time that any concurrent sitting leaders of North Korea and the United States have met.

Ri and Wallstrom dined at the foreign ministry on Thursday evening, then met again on Friday at Villa Bonnier, a lavish building near the USA embassy used by the government for official functions. One topic was said to be confidence-building measures with the USA, including the release of U.S. citizens from North Korean detention.

Its diplomatic mission in Pyongyang, which opened in 1975, was the first Western embassy established in the isolationist country and now represents US, Canadian and Australian diplomatic interests, with Sweden playing a key liaison role.

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During their phone talks, Abe and Moon also confirmed that they will maintain "maximum pressure" on North Korea to make it give up its nuclear and missile programs in a "complete, verifiable and irreversible manner", Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasutoshi Nishimura said.

There was no official word from North Korea since the invitation was delivered via South Korean officials in Washington.

However, as U.S. diplomats worked to set up the presidential visit, it became clear that North Korea and the United States were too far apart on the details of a missile pact to justify handing then-leader Kim Jong Il the huge concession of a Clinton visit.

Worldwide media have speculated that Sweden could either help set up a proposed summit or be a potential location if a tete-a-tete were to be confirmed.

Admiral Harry Harris told the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee he believed the United States would stick to its demand for the "complete, verifiable, irreversible denuclearisation" of the Korean peninsula. The foreign ministry has refused to comment Speaking in Berlin on Friday, Lofven said that if Sweden "can serve as a facilitator to bring about results, then we will of course do that".

"The hysteria that's kicking off now is a bit too much: it's a good development, a feather in the cap of the Swedish foreign ministry, but it's not yet certain that further down the line there will be a highest level meeting".

"They met this morning and discussed the same issues that are being discussed during this trip, such as the security situation", he said.

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