N. Korean Foreign Minister Extends Stay in Sweden

The Latest North Korean foreign minister begins Sweden trip

"We'll see what happens next", Ms Wallstrom said.

"For that goal, we made a decision to focus on denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and the establishment of permanent peace, including measures to reduce military tensions and other agenda to make progress in inter-Korean relations".

North Korea's foreign minister has landed in Sweden for talks with his Swedish counterpart.

"We value this opportunity to arrange a meeting".

Ri's surprise trip to Stockholm has taken on added significance due to the expectation that a summit of Kim and Trump could defuse the tensions over North Korea's nuclear weapons program.

As Newsy previously reported, Sweden was expected to discuss security on the Korean Peninsula and Sweden's "consular responsibilities" to several countries, including the U.S. But those talks have reportedly expanded to include discussions about releasing Americans held in North Korean detention centers.

On Friday, Ri briefly met with Prime Minister Stefan Lofven at Swedish government headquarters.

"If we can help and provide a forum for this and support this process, then this is something we should do".

On Friday, a presidential official told reporters that Mr Moon's summit with Mr Kim would likely be a one-day affair. So far, Pyongyang has yet to comment publicly on what it hopes to gain from the talks. North Korea's top diplomat arrived in Sweden on March 15, for two days of talks.

The trip by Ri is being closely watched because a huge amount of preparation needs to be done before the summit.

The historically neutral European country, whose embassy represents US interests in the North Korean capital, has often played the role of intermediary in discussions between Washington and Pyongyang. It could suggest a potential breakthrough, or a fallback to the North's longstanding position that it's willing to get rid of its nuclear weapons if the United States guarantees its safety.

On Wednesday, Mr Trump appeared to hint at withdrawing U.S. troops stationed in South Korea if Seoul failed to address its trade deficit with Washington.

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