Trump thanks Kim as North Korea transfers remains of Korean War soldiers

ANTHONY WALLACE  AFP
ANTHONY WALLACE AFP
Author

27 July, 2018

North Korea transferred 55 small, flag-draped cases carrying the suspected remains of us soldiers killed in the Korean War on Friday, officials said, a first step in implementing an agreement reached in a landmark summit in June.

Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un's historic summit in pictures Who's leading whom? "It is accompanied by service members from United Nations Command Korea and technical experts from the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency", a press statement issued by the White House said earlier. "We are encouraged by North Korea's actions and the momentum for positive change". -North Korea military search teams conducted 33 recovery operations that collected 229 sets of American remains.

Around 7,700 United States soldiers are listed as missing from the war, with more than 5,000 of the remains believed to still be in North Korea.

United States defence officials are expected to examine the remains in South Korea before sending them on for forensic identification in Hawaii, the agency added. While the active period of the war lasted three years, warring parties never signed a peace treaty, so the Korean War is technically still ongoing.

According to KBS World Radio, North Korea is slated to repatriate two truckloads of wooden boxes of American soldiers on the anniversary.

The two leaders also agreed to build a "robust peace regime" and to return the remains of prisoners of the 1950-1953 Korean War.

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Toomey added: "The administration clobbers farmers with an unnecessary trade war then attempts to assuage them with taxpayer handouts".

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The rescuers also had cassettes, in which the children were placed, to help transport them safely in areas that were flooded. The rescue mission has been a huge operation, led by the Royal Thai Navy's SEAL unit, and supported by a cast of hundreds.

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The operation on Monday went more smoothly than on Sunday and took two hours less as the practice became more refined, he said. The Thai community lies on the border with Myanmar and it is where several of the boys on the soccer team go to school.

Washington's reluctance to declare an end to the Korean War until after North Korea abandons its nuclear arsenal may put it at odds not only with Pyongyang, but also with allies in South Korea. But the North Korean move was welcomed by the White House as a token of the trust behind the understanding made at the Singapore summit last month. Officials have bristled, however, at criticism from the USA that it seeks to profit from the repatriations by demanding excessive fees for handling and transporting the remains.

The return of remains will be a significant step toward building that trust.

While many are expecting that to take place in the morning, there's been no official announcement from the US, the North or UN Command.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visited Pyongyang, the North Korean capital, this month to urge North Korea to go forward with Kim's commitments.

DPAA has identified locations where they believe there are major concentrations of remains inside North Korea.

The U.N. Security Council has unanimously boosted sanctions on North Korea since 2006 in a bid to choke off funding for Pyongyang's nuclear and ballistic missile programmes, banning luxury goods said to include recreational sports equipment.


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