09:01 GMT17 April 2021
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    On Monday, a South Korean delegation flew to Pyongyang to take part in a welcome banquet held by North Korean leader Kim Jong-un prior to talks expected to focus on bubbling tensions on the peninsula and the rocky relationship between North Korea and the US.

    The South Korean delegation includes Chun Eui-yong, Seoul's National Security Office director and Suh Hoona, the head of South Korea's intelligence agency.

    ​Speaking to Sputnik Radio's Loud & Clear, Simone Chun, a fellow at the Korea Policy Institute and member of the Korean Peace Network, broke down the meeting and discussed what could blossom from it.

    "We will have to wait and see, but so far it looks like even President [Donald] Trump is looking forward to talking to North Korea," Chun told show hosts Brian Becker and John Kiriakou. "So if that is true, that probably sounds like we're going to have brighter news than we've had in the last seven or eight years."

    "There were amazing pictures of the Korean delegate… they went to North Korea on a South Korean military aircraft… and the most interesting thing, truly unprecedented, is that they actually met with Kim Jong-un within three hours — that is truly something that has never happened before," she added, before saying that "if all goes well I think we're going to have some major breakthrough."

    Though Chun is hopeful that the talks will end on good terms, she admitted to Becker that at the end of the day nothing can be settled unless the US also signs off.

    "It's just a reality in international politics that without the US, nothing can be done. I think it's very important to go step by step," she said. "These guys are really truly experienced… they aren't just inexperienced bureaucrats, they have years of experience in dealing with North Korea so I think that we really have a dream team."

    Chun believes that Pyongyang will likely use the talks as a way to "learn more about the Trump administration's motives."

    "The most important thing is to end or reduce US hostility to North Korea… the bottom line is that if the United States can end its hostility toward North Korea, a foundational progress can be made."

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.


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