Seoul says parts of inter-Korean summit will be aired live

SEOUL (AP) – North and South Korea agreed to allow live television broadcasts for parts of the summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in next week, South Korea’s presidential office said yesterday.

After a meeting between the countries’ working-level officials, Moon’s office said live coverage will include important moments such as when the leaders meet for the first time at the border truce village of Panmunjom. The office did not specify other parts of the meeting that will be broadcast live.

The April 27 meeting will only be the third summit between the rivals since the end of the 1950-53 Korean War. It is seen as a crucial step in the global diplomatic push to resolve the North Korean nuclear standoff. A separate meeting between Kim and President Donald Trump is anticipated in May or June.

Moon’s office said the Koreas will hold more meetings to discuss the protocol, security and media coverage issues at the summit. South Korean media speculated whether Kim would walk across the Military Demarcation Line that bisects the countries in a symbolic gesture of peace.

The Koreas earlier agreed to set up a telephone hotline between their leaders, which South Korea said would help facilitate dialogue and reduce misunderstanding during times of tension. Moon’s office said the hotline could be ready for test calls as early as Friday. Moon and Kim are planning their first telephone conversation sometime before face-to-face talks, but the timing of the call has not been decided.

A South Korean marine soldier passes by a TV screen showing file footage of South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, during a news programme at the Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, yesterday. – AP