North Korea will close nuclear test site in May, South Korea says

Published: Sunday, April 29, 2018 @ 11:27 AM

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. left, and South Korean President Moon Jae-in considered the summit meeting at the demilitarized zone a success.
Pool/Getty Images
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. left, and South Korean President Moon Jae-in considered the summit meeting at the demilitarized zone a success.(Pool/Getty Images)

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said he will shut down his nuclear test site sometime in May, South Korea officials said Sunday.

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South Korean presidential press secretary Yoon Young-chan said that Kim agreed to the plan during a meeting between the leader and South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Friday, National Public Radio reported.

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Yoon also said that Kim will invite experts and journalists from South Korea and the United States into the country to ensure “transparency” about closing down the site, CNN reported.

Yoon said Kim made his comments during Friday’s summit at the demilitarized zone between the two countries. Kim became the first North Korean leader to step into South Korean territory since fighting ended in the Korean War in 1953.

"The U.S. is constitutionally averse to North Korea, but through dialogue, it will become apparent that we have no intention to target South Korea, the Pacific Ocean or the U.S. with nuclear weapons," Yoon quoted Kim as saying. "If we are able to build trust with the U.S. through frequent meetings, and promises to end war, and practice a policy of non-aggression, there's no reason for us to live a hard life with nuclear weapons.

“There is no reason for us to possess nuclear weapons ... if mutual trust with the United States is built through frequent meetings from now on, and an end to the war and non-aggression are promised.”

Previous talks between North Korea and South Korea in 2000 and 2007 ended with pledges to work toward denuclearization, NPR reported.