19 August 2018

South Koreans slam cancellation of summit

South Koreans slam cancellation of summit
SEOUL: Many South Koreans were fuming on Friday after U.S. President Donald Trump cancelled a historic summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, feeling they had been cheated of a chance of a lifetime to live in peace.

Trump called off the unprecedented meeting, scheduled for June 12 in Singapore, after months of diplomatic progress had silenced bellicose rhetoric from the two sides and eased fears of a return to war.

“North Korea was in the process of doing everything that had been demanded of it. They even detonated their nuclear test site,” said Eugene Lim, a 29-year-old office worker in Seoul.

“Trump has no interest in peace in our country. Why can’t he just let us, the two Koreas, live in peace?”

North Korea on Thursday “completely dismantled” its Punggye-ri nuclear test ground to “ensure the transparency of discontinuance of nuclear tests“, after blowing up tunnels at the site, it said.

The detonation, which took place in the presence of dozens of international journalists but no independent experts, came after Kim Jong Un pledged to cease all nuclear and long-range missile tests last month. Kim also released three American prisoners as a gesture of goodwill.

Dozens of university students and women’s rights activists protested in different rallies in Seoul on Friday to denounce Trump, with some punching his face printed on a picket sign and tearing his photograph apart.

Kim Dong-ho, a 38-year-old employee at a blockchain company, said it wasn’t right to isolate North Korea again when it was making efforts to join the international community.

“After all, those of us living on the Korean peninsula suffer the consequences of your action, you Yankee!,” Kim said.


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