North Korea’s leadership has announced that the country is stepping down from its six-day summit with South Korea and the U.S. in the hopes of ending a crisis that has killed more than 60,000 people.
President Moon Jae-in, who was elected in October and has pledged to rein in North Korea, is to visit the country to lay out the country’s options for dealing with the crisis.
Moon, who had been scheduled to meet with his Chinese counterpart in Beijing on Sunday, has asked for an emergency meeting with top leadership in Pyongyang and has made no secret of his intention to seek a political solution to the crisis that threatens to destroy the communist nation.
The crisis has escalated after Kim Jong Un fired a ballistic missile on Friday that landed in the Sea of Japan, the closest island to the North Korean capital, triggering a massive international response.
The missile was launched by the North’s military, which has vowed to strike the U, U.K., South Korea, Japan and the United States.
The United Nations Security Council on Sunday called for the immediate resumption of joint military drills and other measures, saying that the two Koreas “must end this vicious cycle of war.”
North Korea’s government has responded by saying the missiles launch was an act of aggression and that it would not take part in the exercises.
The U.N. Security Council also reiterated its demand that North Korea halt its nuclear weapons program, and said the North should halt its missile tests as well.
The Trump administration said in a statement Sunday that it “will continue to work with all the relevant parties to fully resolve this issue,” and said it had a “strong desire” to bring North Korea back into the nuclear club.
It said the Trump administration would continue to pursue a diplomatic solution to this crisis.
The North Korean government has said it has no intention of abandoning its nuclear program.