South Korea ‘effectively’ reaches agreement with US to end Korean war

The United States and South Korea have “effectively” reached an agreement on a draft declaration that would formally end the Korean War, South Korea’s top diplomat said Wednesday.

An armistice was signed in July 1953 to end a war that began in 1950 when North Korean troops invaded South Korea. A formal peace treaty ending the war was never signed.

North Korea has been unresponsive to talks on formally ending the war, Yonhap noted. 

South Korean Foreign Minister Chung Eui-yong told reporters on Wednesday that his country and the U.S. have “already shared the understanding” on the importance of ending the war, according to South Korean Yonhap News Agency.

“Regarding the end-of-war declaration, South Korea and the U.S. have already shared the understanding on its importance, and the two sides have effectively reached an agreement on its draft text,” Chung said. 

In September, North Korea’s Vice Foreign Minister Ri Thae Song said Pyongyang would not agree to an official declaration unless the U.S. stopped its “hostile policy” towards the nation.

“The U.S. withdrawal of its double-standards and hostile policy is the top priority in stabilizing the situation of the Korean peninsula and ensuring peace on it,” he said at the time.  

Asked about Chung’s comments, a State Department spokesperson said, “the United States remains committed to achieving lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula through dialogue and diplomacy with the DPRK,” referring to North Korea’s official name as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. 

“To this end, we will continue to seek engagement with the DPRK as part of a calibrated, practical approach in order to make tangible progress that increases the security of the United States, our allies, and our deployed forces,” the spokesperson added.