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Canceled North Korean visit to prep for Olympics ‘not permanent’: South Korea ministry

SEOUL: South Korea’s Unification Ministry said on Saturday that the sudden cancellation of a North Korean delegation’s planned visit to the South to prepare for the North’s art troupe during the Winter Olympics was “not a permanent cancellation”.  “It’s not a permanent cancellation on sending its advance team for performance, it is a tentative cancel,”…

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Trump says he has a ‘very good relationship’ with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un

NEWS DESK: Donald Trump has suggested he has a “very good relationship” with Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader he previously threatened to “totally destroy” over the country’s increasingly serious nuclear threats, reported The Independent. “I probably have a very good relationship with Kim Jong Un,” Mr Trump told the Wall Street Journal in an…

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Trump, on possibility of North Korea talks, says: ‘Who knows where it leads?’

WASHINGTON/SEOUL: U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday after the first intra-Korean talks in over two years that the United States was willing to speak to North Korea “under the right circumstances,” although it was far from clear whether this would pay dividends, reported Reuters. South Korea said Trump had also said in a phone…

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Koreas start first official talks in two years

NEWS DESK: North and South Korea began their first official talks in more than two years on Tuesday, focussing on the forthcoming Winter Olympics after months of tensions over Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons programme, reported AFP. The talks in Panmunjom, the truce village in the Demilitarized Zone that divides the peninsula, came after the North’s leader…

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Trump willing to speak directly with Kim Jong-Un

US President Donald Trump said Saturday he would be willing to speak directly with Kim Jong-Un, voicing hope that rare talks between North and South Korea could help deescalate the crisis over Pyongyang’s nuclear drive. Trump’s remarks were a further pivot from his often-bellicose rhetoric on North Korea and Kim, with whom he has engaged…

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North and South Korea agree to first talks in two years

NEWS DESK: North and South Korea agreed on Friday to hold their first talks in more than two years, hours after Seoul and Washington decided to defer joint military exercises which always infuriate Pyongyang until after the Winter Olympics, reported AFP. The meeting, the first since December 2015, will take place in Panmunjom, the truce…

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Americans should worry about Kim’s mental fitness, not Trump’s: White House

WASHINGTON: The White House on Wednesday defended Donald Trump’s tweet about the size of his nuclear button, saying Americans should be concerned about the North Korean leader’s mental fitness, not their president‘s. On Tuesday, Trump responded to a New Year’s Day speech in which North Korean leader Kim Jong Un warned he had a nuclear…

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Trump to North Korean leader: my nuclear button ‘is bigger & more powerful’

US President Donald Trump warned Kim Jong-Un Tuesday he has a “much bigger” nuclear button than the North Korean leader, as Washington dismissed the prospect of high-level talks between Pyongyang and Seoul. Trump launched the highly personal missive on Twitter hours after his ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley described proposed dialogue between the two…

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North Korea’s Kim says ‘open to dialogue’ with South Korea, will only use nukes if threatened

FILE PHOTO: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un waves to people attending a military parade marking the 105th birth anniversary of country’s founding father, Kim Il Sung in Pyongyang, April 15, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj SEOUL: Kim Jong Un on Monday warned the United States that he has a “nuclear button” on his desk ready for…

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Trump ‘disappointed’ in China over NKorea sanctions

US President Donald Trump — who has often hailed China’s efforts to put pressure on North Korea — hit out at Beijing Thursday for failing to cut off Pyongyang’s oil supply, saying such moves prevented a “friendly solution” of the crisis. “Caught RED HANDED – very disappointed that China is allowing oil to go into…

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North Korea says new U.N. sanctions an act of war

BEIJING/SEOUL: The latest U.N. sanctions against North Korea are an act of war and tantamount to a complete economic blockade against it, North Korea’s foreign ministry said on Sunday, threatening to punish those who supported the measure, reported Reuters. The U.N. Security Council unanimously imposed new sanctions on North Korea on Friday for its recent…

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U.N. Security Council imposes new sanctions on North Korea over missile test

NEW YORK: The U.N. Security Council unanimously imposed new sanctions on North Korea on Friday for its recent intercontinental ballistic missile test, seeking to limit its access to refined petroleum products and crude oil and its earnings from workers abroad. The U.N. resolution seeks to ban nearly 90 percent of refined petroleum exports to North…

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UN slaps new sanctions on North Korea

With China’s backing, the UN Security Council on Friday slapped new sanctions on North Korea that will restrict oil supplies vital for Pyongyang’s missile and nuclear programs. The council unanimously adopted a US-drafted resolution that also orders the repatriation of North Korean workers sent abroad to earn revenue for Kim Jong-Un’s regime. It is the…

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North Korea suspected of South Korean bitcoin hack

NEWS DESK: North Korea is being investigated for possible involvement in a massive cyber-attack on a South Korean currency exchange this week, reported The Independent. The Youbit exchange shut down and collapsed into bankruptcy on Tuesday after hackers stole 17 per cent of its assets. Youbit was also hit by an attack in April that…

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UN to vote on new N.Korea sanctions targeting oil

The UN Security Council will vote Friday on a US-drafted resolution ramping up sanctions on North Korea by restricting oil supplies vital for Pyongyang’s missile and nuclear programs. The United States has been in negotiations with China, Pyongyang’s ally, on slapping new sanctions in response to the November 28 test of an intercontinental ballistic missile…

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North Korean soldier defects to the South: South Korean defense official

South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff spokesman Roh Jae-cheon speaks at a news conference, after a North Korean soldier on Wednesday defected to South Korea, during the Defense Ministry’s regular news briefing in Seoul, in this still image taken from a Reuters TV video, December 21, 2017. REUTERS/Reuters TV SEOUL: South Korean guards fired up…

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U.S. says Facebook, Microsoft disabled North Korean cyber threats

WASHINGTON: Facebook Inc and Microsoft Corp disabled a number of North Korean cyber threats last week, a White House official said on Tuesday, as the United States publicly blamed Pyongyang for a May cyber attack that crippled hospitals, banks and other companies, reported Reuters. “Facebook took down accounts that stopped the operational execution of ongoing…

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North Korean ‘agent’ charged with WMD sale plot in Australia

SYDNEY: A Sydney-based “loyal agent of North Korea” has been charged with trying to sell missile parts and technology on the black market to raise money for Pyongyang in breach of international sanctions, Australian police said Sunday. The 59-year-old naturalised Australian citizen of Korean descent was attempting to broker illicit deals that could have generated…

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Kim Jong-un ‘climbed’ 2,744m mountain in smart leather shoes: state media

NEWS DESK: North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has “climbed” a 2,744m mountain, state media claimed – apparently while wearing smart black leather shoes, reported The Independent. The third-generation dictator scaled Mount Paektu “going through thick snow”, it was said. Mr Kim reportedly ordered that a monument to the peak and nearby education compound should be…

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Chinese state media tells readers how to survive a nuclear attack

BEIJING: The official state-run newspaper in northeastern China’s Jilin city, near the border with North Korea, on Wednesday published a page of “common sense” advice on how readers can protect themselves from a nuclear weapons attack or explosion, reported Reuters. China has voiced grave concern over North Korea’s nuclear and missiles programme, as well as…

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Winter Olympics chiefs accept IOC ban, will welcome clean Russia athletes

SEOUL: Winter Olympics organisers said Wednesday they would prefer if Russians competed under their own flag, but accepted as “second-best” an International Olympic Committee ruling which allows clean athletes from Russia to take part in the Games as neutrals. Russia was banned from the 2018 Winter Games on Tuesday because of a state-orchestrated doping programme,…

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