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North Korea to host military events, possible parade, on eve of Winter Olympics

 

North Korea to host military events, possible parade, on eve of Winter Olympics, By Chad O’Carroll 
Celebrations of the 70th anniversary of the foundation of the Korean People’s Army due in Pyongyang

North Korean authorities will host a series of military anniversary events in Pyongyang including a possible military parade around February 8, just one day before Winter “Peace” Olympics kick-off in Pyeongchang, South Korea, an invitation seen by MHINK News on Wednesday shows.

Sent to defense attachés, deputies, and spouses accredited to the DPRK, the invitation requests participation in celebrations surrounding a forthcoming Korean People’s Army (KPA) anniversary which one regular visitor to the North said would likely include a military parade.

Gambar terkait

The invitation, sent “upon the authorization from the Ministry of People’s Armed Forces, DPRK,” requests foreign defense attachés to “attend festival functions held in Pyongyang on the occasion of 70th anniversary of the transformation of the Korean People’s Army into a regular revolutionary armed forces (8th Feb 2018).”Though not providing specific details about the events, the invitation said delegations “shall be attending several festival functions held on the occasion of the anniversary as well as meet relevant officials of Ministry of People’s Armed Forces and discuss issues of mutual interest upon your request.”
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North Korea to send 230-member cheering squad to 2018 Winter Olympics

 

North Korea to send 230-member cheering squad to 2018 Winter Olympics, By Dagyum Ji 
Two Koreas also reportedly discussed holding cultural event at Mt. Kumgang, Masikryong ski resort

Correction at 1745 KST, January 18:  The South Korean Ministry of Unification (MOU) said the North Korean squad to the Daegu Universiade Games in 2003 was made up of 303, not 306, participants. This article has been amended to reflect this. North Korea will send a 230-member cheering squad to next month’s PyeongChang Winter Olympics and 140 member orchestra to South Korean

U.S. open to talks, but North Korea not “credible”: Tillerson

 

U.S. open to talks, but North Korea not “credible”: Tillerson, By Seungmock Oh 
Secretary of State says Pyongyang “knows our channels are open”

Washington remains open to dialogue with Pyongyang but is not convinced the DPRK is “credible,” Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Tuesday, while declining to comment on reports that the U.S. is preparing for military action against North Korea. Speaking at a joint conference with Canada’s foreign affairs minister Chrystia Freeland following the Vancouver Foreign Ministers’ Meeting On Security and Stability on the Korean Peninsula, in Vancouver, Canada on January 16, 2018.

 

North Korean authorities install toll system on Pyongyang-Wonsan highway

 

North Korean authorities install toll system on Pyongyang-Wonsan highway, By Chad O’Carroll

New system designed to pay for road maintenance, source says

North Korean authorities recently installed a toll system on the Pyongyang-Wonsan tourist highway and will soon require all road users to pay to use the nationwide highway network, information gathered by MHI-NK News since Saturday shows.

 

Foreign ministers endorse sustained pressure on North Korea in Vancouver

 

Foreign ministers endorse sustained pressure on North Korea in Vancouver, By Hamish Macdonald

Sanctions enforcement to be a key focus of ministerial meeting on DPRK

Foreign ministers from Canada, the U.S., UK, South Korea, and Japan on Tuesday endorsed applying further pressure against North Korea during the opening remarks of a high-level meeting on Security and Stability on the Korean Peninsula in Vancouver. The five foreign ministers were delivering opening remarks for the event co-hosted by the U.S. and Canada,UK, South Korea, and Japan. the foreign ministers gathered in Vancouver issued a statement to that effect, though they do support the two Koreas’ decision to talk. Sanctions and pressure will remain in place until North Korea gives up its nuclear weapons. That’s what top diplomats from twenty countries said at the Vancouver Summit on Tuesday local time. In a joint statement, 20 nations vowed to support the inter-Korean talks in the hope of a sustained easing of tensions. But the statement also called on individual nations to impose tougher unilateral sanctions that go beyond UN Security Council resolutions to pressure the North. In particular, the nations at the meeting pledged to improve maritime interdiction operations and stop illicit ship-to-ship transfers to block trade with North Korea. South Korea’s Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha expressed hope that the momentum for engagement with the North will go beyond the Winter Olympics, while emphasizing that sanctions should be applied more rigorously. While repeating the sentiment that diplomacy is the best option, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson warned that the world will not accept North Korea as a nuclear state, and rejected a freeze in South Korea-U.S. military drills in exchange for a pause in the North’s weapons development program.

 

Why Russia wasn’t invited to the Vancouver conference on North Korea

 

Why Russia wasn’t invited to the Vancouver conference on North Korea, By Anthony V. Rinna

A high-level meeting excluding Beijing and Moscow ignores the Kremlin’s growing clout over the DPRK

Correction at 1410 KST, January 18: A previous version of this article suggested that Russia had not been present at recent track 1.5 talks in Sweden. This was incorrect, and the article has been amended to reflect this. Hugging the Pacific on Canada’s south-west corner, Vancouver no doubt serves as a gateway for the Great War soon.
Foreign ministers from 20 countries are meeting in Vancouver, Canada, to discuss the North Korean nuclear threat. They are looking for ways to increase diplomatic and financial pressure on North Korea to force it to give up its nuclear ambitions. But China and Russia have not been invited. Beijing is North Korea’s key trading partner and its only ally. It has called the summit “meaningless”. China wants gentle diplomacy to work first instead of tougher measures.

Top MHI-NK Stories from around the web:

Satellite image shows ongoing work on N.K.’s second SLBM test barge (Yonhap News) Recent satellite imagery showed ongoing work on North Korea’s second submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) test stand barge off its western coast, a U.S. expert said Tuesday. “Commercial satellite imagery from Jan. 6 indicates work on North Korea’s second SLBM test stand barge, berthed at the Nampo Navy Shipyard, is ongoing,” Joseph S. Bermudez Jr., a North Korea military analysis, wrote on the 38 North website.
The North conducted its first SLBM launch in April 2016.
Since November, when the North moved its second SLBM test stand barge to its western port of Nampo, “there is now a small floating crane moored alongside the barge and its boom is extended over it,” Bermudez said.
The purpose of the movement is probably related to the “final stages of repair before declaring the barge operational since both the test stand barge and floating crane are located at the dock there.” But it is unclear when the barge will become operational.


NK berates Moon again over remarks on sanctions (Korea Herald)  North Korea on Wednesday harshly condemned South Korean President Moon Jae-in again for his latest remarks on unwavering sanctions on North Korea’s nuclear development, irrespective of inter-Korean dialogue, calling them “stupid and nasty words.” During a New Year press conference on Jan. 10 , Moon expressed thanks to US President Donald Trump, saying that the inter-Korean talks that opened the previous day might have been an effect of US-led international sanctions and pressure on the North for its nuclear development. He also said Seoul will continue to keep pace with pressure and sanctions by the international community until the North Korean nuclear issue is resolved. The minister-level talks were held to discuss the North’s participation in the upcoming Winter Olympics in the South Korean alpine town of PyeongChang.


Hasil gambar untuk U.N. chief believes war over North Korea nukes is avoidable

U.N. chief believes war over North Korea nukes is avoidable (Asahi Shimbun)  Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Tuesday he believes war over North Korea’s nuclear weapons is avoidable–but he’s worried and “not yet sure that peace is guaranteed.” “There is a window of opportunity,” he told a news conference. “That window of opportunity will, in my opinion, hopefully, make the war avoidable, but it is important that we don’t miss the opportunities that windows can provide.”Guterres’ comments follow the restoration of a military hotline and North Korea’s first formal talks with South Korea in about two years last week.

North Korea agreed to send a delegation to the Feb. 9-25 Winter Olympics in the South Korean city of Pyeongchang and hold military talks aimed at reducing frontline animosities. But Pyongyang has insisted its talks with South Korea won’t deal with its nuclear and missile programs, saying those weapons primarily target the United States.

Critics question how long the warmer mood can last without any serious discussion on the North’s nuclear disarmament.Guterres also made clear that denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula is the key issue.”There are some signals of hope,” he said, and it’s extremely important to use them “to make sure that a serious process leading to the peaceful denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula takes place.”

The secretary-general expressed concern that sometimes “we look at these symbols of goodwill and positive indications and we forget that the main problem is yet to be solved.”So, there is a risk that people think, “Oh now things are solved,” he said.


 

Gambar terkait                        Sonu Jong from the Chosun Ilbo’s News Desk

N.Korea’s Army of Cheerleaders Needs to Stay at Home (Chosun Ilbo Opinion) The Olympics is a sporting event, not a propaganda platform. “The North Korean cheerleading squad is filled with hand-picked beauties who, aside from their lipstick and smiles, are remembered here for going into hysterics when they saw a picture of their leader hanging from a tree as they were driven through the streets of South Korea…


 

Continuation of Dual Track Approach (Comparative Connections) In the final months of 2017, South Korea and Japan despite their conflicts over issues of comfort women and Dokdo/Takeshima, converged on economics and North Korea. More than ever, the recent events demonstrate the importance of the triangular relationship of the U.S., South Korea and Japan”.

Trump’s state banquet: comfort women and Dokdo shrimp

Hasil gambar untuk S. Korea supports efforts for UNESCO listing of comfort women documents

While both countries outdid themselves with elaborate receptions, Trump’s Nov. 8 state banquet at Cheong Wa Dae, South Korea’s presidential Blue House, became a diplomatic flashpoint between Seoul and Tokyo because President Moon Jae-in’s office put 88-year-old Lee Yong-soo, a Korean victim of Japan’s wartime sexual slavery, on the guest list. Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga Yoshihide said in a news conference that the invitation breached the spirit of the 2015 comfort women agreement, which aimed to “finally” and “irreversibly” resolve the comfort women issue, and demanded that Seoul faithfully implement the agreement.

Civil society and historical and territorial contentions.

Hasil gambar untuk S. Korea supports efforts for UNESCO listing of comfort women documents

 

Given the rise of civic activism on historical and territorial issues, it is worth noting how civil society shaped the development of both the comfort women issue and the dispute over Dokdo/Takeshima. This fall, 15 civic groups from eight countries, including South Korea and China, regularly demanded the registration of 2,700 types of documents related to Japan’s wartime sexual slavery of women as a “Memory of the World” listing of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)

Hopes for high-level shuttle diplomacy and the emperor’s visit

Hasil gambar untuk Continuation of Dual Track Approach

 

Despite contention over historical and territorial issues, both South Korea and Japan regularly expressed hope for the resumption of high-level shuttle diplomacy – annual reciprocal visits by the leaders that were suspended in December 2011 – to enhance bilateral ties.

Future-oriented cooperation: economy and social issues

Hasil gambar untuk Bank of Korea (BOK) Gov. Lee Ju-yeol is scheduled to host a banquet for his Chinese counterpart Zhou Xiaochuan and Japanese central banker Haruhiko Kuroda in Songdo, west of Seoul.

Two areas where South Korea and Japan did make progress were in the economy and North Korea. For instance, on Sept. 13, the heads of the central banks of South Korea, Japan, and China held their annual meeting in Songdo, South Korea and exchanged views on economic and financial developments in the three countries.South Korea and Japan discussed cooperation on social issues that both countries face, such as a low birth rate, rapidly aging population, and a fluctuating job market that could influence long-term economic development of both countries.

Cooperation on North Korea: good and bad

Hasil gambar untuk Continuation of Dual Track Approach

 

Cooperation between Japan and South Korea over North Korean provocations and its nuclear program increased dramatically over the past year. It would be ironic if shared concerns over North Korea prompt them to cooperate on military and security matters – after years of stalling or dissembling.

The months ahead

Hasil gambar untuk Oh Tae-gyu,

 

As promised, the Moon administration issued an assessment of the 2015 comfort women agreement. On Dec. 27, Oh Tae-gyu, the head of a task force examining the issue, said the group concluded that “A victim-oriented approach, which has been accepted as a norm of the international community for human rights of wartime women, has not been fully reflected (in the deal).” Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha said that the government accepts the review of the task force “in a serious and humble manner.”

 

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