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DPRK seeks global support for peace on Korean Peninsula

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The official media of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) today called on the international community, in particular the countries which share responsibility for peace on the Korean Peninsula, to back peace-building efforts there. The official Minju Joson daily said that the May 24 dismantling of the DPRK’s northern nuclear test ground “testified in practice, not in words, to the firm will of the DPRK to join the international efforts for the total ban on nuclear tests.” DPRK top leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump are scheduled to meet on June 12 in Singapore, the first such summit to be held since the end of the 1950-53 Korean War.

“The present situation urgently requires countries responsible for peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula to take practical steps for peace on the peninsula from a responsible and serious stand and attitude,” said the daily. “Invariable is the stand of the DPRK to ensure peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and make active contributions to world peace and stability,” it said.

China, Kyrgyzstan to establish comprehensive strategic partnership

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China and Kyrgyzstan today agreed to establish a comprehensive strategic partnership. The agreement was reached during the talks between Chinese President Xi Jinping and visiting Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov in Beijing.  “It is another landmark event in the history of bilateral ties that China and Kyrgyzstan will establish a comprehensive strategic partnership, which will inject new impetus into the development of bilateral ties,” Xi told Jeenbekov. Standing at a new starting point, China is willing to work with Kyrgyzstan to carry forward the traditional friendship and conduct all-round cooperation so as to achieve national development and better benefit the two peoples, said Xi.

Noting that Kyrgyzstan was one of the first countries to support and participate into the Belt and Road Initiative and related construction, Xi said China would like to make joint efforts with Kyrgyzstan to open minds and explore potentials to lift bilateral cooperation to a new level.

 

Trump claims North Korea summit could be delayed

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After days of touting success in managing to bring the leader of the rogue nuclear regime to the table for negotiations over the end of his nuclear weapons program, now the U.S. President Donald Trump has hinted at the possibility that the planned summit may fall through. The historic summit between the North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and the U.S. President was scheduled to take place in Singapore on June 12. However, in recent weeks, the diplomatic overture took a turn for the worse after North Korea cancelled planned talks with South Korea and even threatened to cancel the meeting with Trump over Seoul’s military drills with the U.S. North Korea officially criticized the joint war games by U.S. and South Korean forces, throwing the Singapore summit in doubt.

U.S. meanwhile insisted that the summit would lead to unilateral North Korean surrender of its nuclear weapons programme. Trump earlier warned Kim Jong Un that if he refuses to make a deal he could face the same fate as the Libyan leader, Muammar Gaddafi, who was toppled and killed after a NATO-backed insurrection. North Korea said that it supports the “complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula” but interprets it as a gradual, phased and mutual disarmament process.

China to launch 11 more BeiDou-3 satellites in 2018

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China will launch another 11 BeiDou-3 satellites by the end of 2018, adding to its domestic BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS), an official said at an academic conference Wednesday. The satellites will provide initial services for countries and regions along the Belt and Road by the end of the year, said Wang Li, chairman of China Satellite Navigation System Committee.  China has already launched eight BeiDou-3 satellites. Addressing the Ninth China Satellite Navigation Conference in Harbin, capital of northeast China’s Heilongjiang province, Wang said the BeiDou system is moving to become a global service provider after offering stable and reliable time and space information for clients in the Asia-Pacific region.

Compared to earlier generation satellites, the BeiDou-3 is able to send signals that are more compatible with other satellite navigation systems and provide satellite-based augmentation, as well as search and rescue services in accordance with international standards. Its positioning accuracy has reached 2.5 to 5 meters.  The BeiDou system will coordinate with other technology, such as remote sensing, Internet, big data and cloud computing, in the future, said Wang.

Wang Yi champions multilateralism at G20 meeting

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Upholding multilateralism, improving global governance and creating a community of shared interests are in line with the trend of the times and the common interests of all nations, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said here Monday.  Wang made the remarks while addressing the 2018 G20 Meeting of Foreign Affairs Ministers scheduled for Sunday through Monday. Welcoming the creation and development of the G20 as a new manifestation of multilateralism and an important advancement in the reform of global governance, Wang said that discussing issues concerning multilateralism and global governance is of great importance at a time when the G20 summit enters its 10th year. The G20 members, Wang added, should jointly build a community of shared future for mankind, and improve the global governance system under the guidance of reform.

U.S., South Korea hold talks to soothe North Korea tensions

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After North Korea threatened to pull out of the high-level talks between Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump, which are scheduled to be held on June 12 in Singapore – U.S. and South Korea huddled up to discuss the future course of action. Today, the South Korean President Moon Jae In and Trump reportedly held discussions to ensure that the North Korea-U.S. summit remains on track. South Korea’s presidential office said in a statement that Jae In and Trump spoke over the phone for about 20 minutes, reportedly exchanging their views on North Korea’s recent reactions. The presidential official said, “The two leaders will work closely and unwaveringly for the successful hosting of the North Korea-U.S. summit set on June 12, including the upcoming South Korea-U.S. summit.” On Tuesday, Jae In and Trump are set to meet in Washington – in a meeting that was planned to be a prelude to the historic summit that is scheduled to be held between North Korea and the U.S.North Korea has showed a dramatic change in tone. Putting weeks of Korean diplomacy in jeopardy, North Korea thrashed Seoul, calling it “ignorant and incompetent.”

China launches relay satellite to explore Moon’s far side

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China launched a relay satellite to set up a communication link between Earth and the planned Chang’e-4 lunar probe that will explore the Moon’s mysterious far side. The satellite was carried by a Long March-4C rocket that blasted off at 5:28 am (2128 GMT) from southwest China’s Xichang Satellite Launch Center, according to the China National Space Administration (CNSA). The satellite, named Queqiao, or Magpie Bridge, was developed by China Spacesat Co., Ltd. under the China Academy of Space Technology (CAST).  “The launch is a key step for China to realize its goal of being the first country to send a probe to soft-land on and rove the far side of the Moon,” said Zhang Lihua, manager of the relay satellite project.

About 25 minutes after lift-off, the satellite separated from the rocket and entered an Earth-Moon transfer orbit with the perigee at 200 km and the apogee at about 400,000 km. Meanwhile, the solar panels and the communication antennas were unfolded. China has outlined an ambitious blueprint for deep space exploration, including the Chang’e-5 lunar probe in 2019.  After fulfilling the three steps of its lunar probe program — orbiting, landing and returning — China will further explore the Moon, including landing and probing the polar regions, said Tian Yulong, CNSA secretary general.  China will launch its first Mars probe in 2020, and it is expected to orbit, land and put a rover on the Red Planet.

Two Koreas to hold talks as North prepares to shut test site

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The South and North will hold a high-level inter-Korea meeting on May 16 in the Peace House in Panmunjom, to discuss the implementation of ‘Panmunjom Declaration for Peace, Prosperity, and Unification of the Korean Peninsula,” several media reports quoted the Unification Ministry, as saying, in a statement. The two sides are likely to discuss measures related to the implementation of agreements reached at the intra-Korean summit in April. The meet is scheduled at the border village of Panmunjom in the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ), the world’s most heavily guarded border, separating the two countries. According to several media reports, Wednesday’s inter-Korea talks will see North Korea send a 29-member delegation led by Ri Son-gwon, chairman of the ‘Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the country’. From South Korea, Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon will lead a team of five.

This comes ahead of North Korea’s scheduled dismantlement of its nuclear test site later this month in a bid to uphold its previous pledge to discontinue nuclear tests. A ceremony for the dismantling of the facility reportedly has been scheduled between May 23-25. It is pertinent to mention that the announcement of the dismantlement of the nuclear test site came after US President Donald Trump announced that he will hold a meet with Kim Jong-un in Singapore on June 12.

China: Xi presides over first meeting of Foreign Affairs Commission

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Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), on Tuesday called for enhancing the centralized and unified leadership of the CPC Central Committee over foreign affairs and opening up new prospects of major-country diplomacy with Chinese characteristics. Xi, also Chinese president, chairman of the Central Military Commission and head of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the CPC Central Committee, made the remarks when presiding over the first meeting of the Foreign Affairs Commission.

The meeting was also attended by Premier Li Keqiang, also member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and deputy head of the commission, and Vice President Wang Qishan, also member of the commission. Wang Huning, member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and member of the Secretariat of the CPC Central Committee, and Vice Premier Han Zheng, also member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, were also present at the meeting.

China, ROK agree to enhance mutual trust, cooperation

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Chinese Premier Li Keqiang met with President Moon Jae-in of the Republic of Korea (ROK) in Tokyo Wednesday, vowing to enhance political mutual trust and win-win cooperation. Calling the two countries close neighbors and important cooperation partners, Li said China hopes to enhance strategic communication and political trust with the ROK, expand win-win cooperation and promote further easing of regional situation. The two countries should synergize their development strategies and enhance cooperation in various areas, Li said. The 7th China-Japan-ROK leaders’ meeting, held earlier in the day in Tokyo, had reached many new consensuses on boosting cooperation, maintaining regional stability and facilitating regional development, Li said.

China will take over the presidency of the trilateral cooperation, he said, vowing to work closely with Japan and the ROK to cement trust and meet each other halfway to boost trilateral cooperation as well as regional integration. Li congratulated the success of the recent inter-Korean summit between Moon and leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) Kim Jong-un. He welcomed the return of the nuclear issue on Korean Peninsula to the track of dialogue and spoke highly of the efforts made by the ROK.

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