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New South Korean president willing to visit Pyongyang

During the call, Moon told Xi that South Korean people and companies in China “are going through many difficulties”, and said he hoped Xi could “pay special attention so the restrictions and sanctions could be smoothly resolved”, Yoon said.

“We have no choice but to recognize Kim Jong Un as a counterpart, whether we put pressure and impose sanctions on North Korea or hold dialogue”.

Congratulating Moon on his election as South Korean president, President Xi said that China and South Korea are close neighbours as well as important players in the region.

The North did not report the victory of the South’s previous president Lee Myung-Bak at all.

In a sign of Washington’s growing concern about the North, the Central Intelligence Agency announced Wednesday its establishment of an integrated ‘Korea Mission Center’. His appointment requires parliamentary approval.

Moon took the oath of office in Seoul on Wednesday after comfortably winning the presidential by-election – polling 41% of the votes – and replaces ousted leader Park Geun-hye who awaits a corruption trial in jail.

“I will quickly move to solve the crisis in national security”. ‘If needed, I will fly immediately to Washington.

Moon said Pyongyang’s nuclear issue should be addressed “comprehensively and gradually”, not only with pressure but also through talks, because current worldwide sanctions are also aimed at guiding Kim’s regime to return to dialogue, Yoon said.

Numerous missile tests were considered failures, but experts have said Pyongyang is making faster-than-expected progress toward its stated goal of developing a nuclear-tipped missile that could reach the US mainland. Moon also spoke with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Thursday, with the two agreeing to cooperate closely on the North Korea issue.

The conservative Park took a hard line on Pyongyang and its nuclear and missile programs.

In his speech, Moon, 64, also pledged to sever what he described as the collusive ties between business and government that have plagued many of South Korea’s family-run conglomerates, known as chaebol, and vowed to be incorruptible.

A phone conversation between Moon and US President Donald Trump on Wednesday night also touched on the Korean Peninsula.

Xi told Moon Seoul and Beijing should respect each other’s concerns, set aside their differences, seek common ground and handle disputes appropriately, China’s foreign ministry said in a statement.

The South’s biggest trading partner, China has been infuriated by the deployment of the United States anti-missile system THAAD in the country, which it sees as a threat to its own military capability. Moon said during the campaign for this week’s snap election that he wanted to review that decision.

“In South Korea, what defines you as a conservative or progressive candidate comes down to your policy position on foreign policy”, James Kim, an global relations expert at the Asan Institute for Policy Studies in Seoul, told Sputnik.

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