North Korea changes time zone to match South Korea

North Korea changes time zone to match South Korea
© Korea Summit Press Pool/UPI Photo

North Koreans will set their clocks ahead by 30 minutes on Saturday, as the country moves to match its time zone to South Korea's for the first time since 2015. 

The country's state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported on Friday that the North would adjust its timezone in order to "speed up the process for the North and the South to become one." The BBC provided a translation of the report.

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The adjustment comes hours after President Trump announced that he had set a date and time for a key meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, though he did not say when or where that encounter would take place.

Trump is expected to meet with Kim in late May or sometime in June. The talks will mark the first such meeting between a sitting U.S. president and a North Korean leader in history.

North Korea has already taken a series of steps to prepare for the meeting. Pyongyang has said it will cease nuclear weapon and ballistic missile tests ahead of the talks, and announced last month that it would shutter a nuclear test site in a show of good faith.

After another landmark meeting last month between Kim and South Korean President Moon Jae-in, the two leaders announced they would work toward eradicating nuclear weapons from the Korean Peninsula. The leaders also said they would enter into talks with the U.S. to declare a formal end to the Korean War.

Fighting in the Korean War spanned from 1950 until 1953, when a ceasefire was called. But a peace treaty was never signed, leaving the two Koreas in a state of perpetual war for more than 60 years.