Trump, Kim agree to repatriating USA military remains

Leader of North Korea Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump

The final deal over the North Korean problem is yet to be signed, and the US wants South Korea and China to be part of it.

It also seemed to leave officials completely off guard in South Korea, where the presence of US troops has always been described as necessary to maintaining peace on the peninsula.

South Korea's Presidential Blue House said it needed to "to find out the precise meaning or intentions" of Trump's statement, while adding that it was willing to "explore various measures to help the talks move forward more smoothly". "South Korea military drills, but the American military presence in South Korea wouldn't mean much if the militaries don't practice through joint drills", said Moon, now a senior analyst for the Seoul-based Korea Research Institute for National Strategy. North Korea also insists that the US troop presence in the South, as well as its nuclear "umbrella" over allies Seoul and Tokyo, are part of America's "hostile" policy toward the North. "In coordination with our (South Korean) partners, we will continue with our current military posture until we receive updated guidance from the Department of Defense (DoD) and/or Indo-Pacific Command (INDOPACOM)". He also noted that the drills are quite expensive and the move will save a considerable amount of money for the USA budget.

A joint declaration after the first meeting between a USA president and a North Korean leader called the summit "an epochal event of great significance in overcoming decades of tensions and hostilities between the two countries and for the opening up of a new future".

Reaffirming the 27 April Panmunjon Declaration, North Korea will commit to working towards complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

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He said he thinks holding the (quote)"wargames" is very provocative when there's a reconciliatory mood building between Washington and Pyongyang.

South Korea said last month that the issue of US troops stationed there was unrelated to any future peace treaty with North Korea and that American forces should stay even if such an agreement were signed.

In a joint statement signed by the leaders, the countries committed to the recovery of the remains and the immediate repatriation of those already identified.

Wallace said another key issue will be when economic sanctions are lifted, since Trump has said they will remain in place until North Korea completely dismantles its nuclear program, while Kim has pushed for a phased process.

Associated Press writers Kim Tong-hyung in Seoul and Gillian Wong in Beijing contributed to this report.

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