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People's Daily Online

S.Korean president says to carefully review joint drills with U.S. if DPRK, U.S. talks continue

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 08:40, June 15, 2018

SEOUL, June 14 -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in said Thursday that he will carefully review the U.S.-South Korea joint military exercises if talks between the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the United States continue.

Moon made the remarks during a National Security Council (NSC) meeting of the presidential Blue House to assess the DPRK-U.S. summit and discuss response measures of the South Korean government.

The meeting was attended by major security and foreign affairs officials, including foreign and defense ministers, spy agency chief, and national security advisor.

After holding the historic summit with DPRK top leader Kim Jong Un, U.S. President Donald Trump said in Singapore Tuesday that he would halt the U.S.-South Korea war games as it is inappropriate to stage such "provocative" drills in the dialogue period.

Moon said that if the DPRK sincerely puts denuclearization into action, and if earnest talks between Pyongyang and Washington continue to eliminate hostile relations, he would carefully review the joint annual military drills between Seoul and Washington.

Under such conditions, South Korea needs to flexibly change its military pressure in accordance with the Panmunjom Declaration, in which Moon and Kim agreed to build mutual trust after holding the third-ever inter-Korean summit on April 27 at the truce village of Panmunjom.

The joint annual U.S.-South Korea military exercises have been carried out twice in spring and fall each.

This year's springtime war games were conducted in April as it was delayed for the South Korea-hosted Winter Olympics. The autumn military drills are scheduled for August this year.

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