North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has rejected an invitation by South Korean President Moon Jae-in to a regional summit next week, Pyongyang’s state media said yesterday, in a stark illustration of the dire relations between the neighbours.
South Korea is due to host a summit with Southeast Asian leaders in its port city of Busan from next Monday, and Moon had previously expressed hope that Kim would attend.
Kim received a personal letter from Moon on November 5, North Korea’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said, but dismissed the prospect of the leader attending the summit.
In a commentary, it accused the South of failing to carry out agreements reached between the two Koreas and harming cross-border ties by relying on the United States.
“How can we sit face to face and solve things with such a partner entrusting everything to the outsider without any independence and self-standing attitude,” the agency said.
Given the failure of past summits, a North-South meeting for “mere form’s sake would be pointless”, it added.
KCNA said Seoul had asked Pyongyang to send a special envoy if Kim could not attend.
Moon held three meetings with the North Korean leader last year.