N Korea to close nuke test site in May

Agencies
NKorea plans to shut its nuclear testing site and adjust its clocks to be in sync with SKorea

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has vowed to shut down the country's nuclear test site in May and open the process to experts and journalists from South Korea and the United States, Seoul's presidential office says.

Kim made the comments during his summit with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Friday at a border truce village, where he also expressed optimism about his anticipated meeting with Donald Trump, saying the US president will learn he's "not a person" to fire missiles toward the United States, Moon's spokesman Yoon Young-chan said.

Moon and Kim during the summit promised to work toward the "complete denuclearisation" of the Korean Peninsula, but made no references to verification or timetables. Seoul had also shuttled between Pyongyang and Washington to set up a potential meeting between Kim and Trump, which is expected next month or early June.

"Once we start talking, the United States will know that I am not a person to launch nuclear weapons at South Korea, the Pacific or the United States," Yoon quoted Kim as saying.

"If we maintain frequent meetings and build trust with the United States and receive promises for an end to the war and a non-aggression treaty, then why would be need to live in difficulty by keeping our nuclear weapons?" Yoon quoted Kim as saying.

US President Donald Trump told Moon in a phone call that he was pleased the leaders of the two Koreas reaffirmed the goal of complete denuclearisation during their summit, Seoul officials said.

"Trump said it was good news for not only the two Koreas but the whole world that they affirmed the goal of realising a nuclear-free Korean peninsula through a complete denuclearisation," Blue House spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom told a separate briefing on Sunday.

"Moon told Trump that Kim said he and Trump would get along with each other, ... and Trump said he was looking forward to talks with Kim and there would be a very good result."

Moon also informed Russian President Vladimir Putin of the summit's outcome in a separate call, and proposed a joint study on trilateral co-operation over rail, gas and power infrastructure involving North Korea.

North Korea this month announced it has suspended all tests of nuclear devices and intercontinental ballistic missiles and plans to close its nuclear testing ground.

Yoon said Kim also revealed plans to readjust its current time zone to match the South's.

The Koreas used the same time zone for decades before the North in 2015 created its own "Pyongyang Time" by setting the clock 30 minutes behind South Korea and Japan.