Two Koreas' leaders in mountain show of unity

However, their premier accord on the issue that most worries the world - the North's pursuit of nuclear-tipped missiles that can accurately strike the USA mainland - contained a big condition: Kim Jong Un stated that he would permanently dismantle North Korea's main nuclear facility only if the United States takes unspecified corresponding measures.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in cleared a top item off his bucket list on Thursday: Climbing Mount Paektu in North Korea with its leader Kim Jong Un.

Pompeo went on to say that he will meet with North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho in New York City next week during the United Nations General Assembly meeting.

Moon plans to return to South Korea later Thursday, as the leaders bask in the glow of the joint statement they settled Wednesday.

"I have a dream that I have not been able to fulfil for a long time, which is trekking Mount Baekdu and the Kaema Plateau (in North Korea)", Mr Moon said during a banquet after his first summit with Mr Kim Jong Un in April, which took place at the Demilitarised Zone separating the two neighbours.

"We absolutely can not let this hard to come by opportunity for peace slip away once again", the Chinese government's top diplomat, State Councillor Wang Yi, said in a statement.

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But more eye-catching to Washington was his promise to dismantle a missile engine-test facility and a missile launchpad in northwest North Korea that have been essential to the country's development of intercontinental ballistic missiles, and invite outside experts to watch.

There were also agreements on inter-Korean relations such as a joint Olympic bid.

-North Korea talks, little progress was evident on the major issues dividing the two sides.

"But it is no closer to North Korean disarmament", he said.

Mr. Kim also promised to visit Seoul, the South Korean capital, which would make him the first North Korean leader to make such a trip.

President Moon Jae-in (left) addresses an audience of thousands of North Koreans at a stadium in Pyongyang on Wednesday.

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North Korea says Kim's grandfather and father, Kim Jong Il, were born at Mount Paektu, a centerpiece of the North's idolization and propaganda campaign to highlight the sacred bloodline of the ruling Kim family.

Although Mount Paektu straddles the North Korea-China border and can be reached from China, where it is known as Changbai Mountain, Moon has never visited.

In his seven-minute long speech, he said the two countries should "become one", as they were before the war.

North Korea markets the tickets mainly to Chinese tourists at an eye-watering price to bring in much-needed valuta.

Many South Koreans also feel drawn to the volcano, which, according to Korean mythology, was the birthplace of Dangun, the founder of the first ancient Korean kingdom, and has always been considered one of the most lovely places on the peninsula.

Both countries chose to open a permanent meeting place for families long separated by the border in the near future, Moon said.

More news: Moon, Kim Announce Little of Substance After Summit

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