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Korean leaders meet for a high-stakes summit

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Tens of thousands of North Koreans chant “Unification!” and wave flowers as their leader Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in parade through Pyongyang, as the two leaders kick off a summit aimed at rekindling stalled nuclear diplomacy.

Grace Lee reports.

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Korean leaders meet for a high-stakes summit

The leaders of North and South Korea kicked off their latest summit on Tuesday (September 18), this time in Pyongyang Kim Jong Un greeted the South's Moon Jae-in at the airport.

The two, looking far more familiar in their third meeting, with smiles and hugs.

Moon even took the time to shake hands with North Korean civilians.

Tens of thousands of them showed up, waving flowers and chanting "unification." Later, more of the same treatment from North Koreans as Moon and Kim paraded around the streets.

The big question at this summit is whether or not Kim is serious about denuclearization.

And it may set the stage for a second summit with U.S. President Donald Trump.

According to Moon's aides, Trump has asked the South Korean president to be "chief negotiator" between himself and Kim, after canceling a trip to Pyongyang by secretary of state Mike Pompeo last month.

Most recently tensions have spiked again between the U.S. and North Korea, and Washington has cranked up pressure on other countries to squeeze the North with sanctions.

On Monday (September 17), U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley even accused Russia of "cheating" on those sanctions.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) UNITED STATES AMBASSADOR TO THE UNITED NATIONS, NIKKI HALEY, SAYING: "Russia is actively working to undermine the enforcement of the Security Council sanctions on North Korea." Pyongyang and Seoul are both looking to end the Korean War, which is still technically ongoing.

In the 50s it was put on hold with an armistice - not a peace treaty.

But before that can happen, Washington wants to see concrete signs of denuclearization.

And there's growing evidence that North Korea's still building nuclear weapons.

Experts say a core task for Moon in Pyongyang will be to get Kim Jong Un to agree on a clear timeline to get rid of those weapons.

He and Kim are expected to unveil a joint statement on Wednesday (September 19).



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