S. Korea, France to hold high-level talks on N. Korea
SEOUL, Jan. 23 (Yonhap) -- South Korea and France are set to hold high-level consultative talks this week on how to deal with North Korea's nuclear programs, Seoul's Foreign Ministry said Monday.
South Korea's top nuclear envoy Kim Hong-kyun is scheduled to meet with Political Director of the French Foreign Ministry Nicolas de Riviere on Wednesday in Paris, it said. The meeting will be the first since the two countries set up high-level consultative talks on North Korea's nuclear programs.
Kim is also set to hold two separate meetings with Helga Schmid, secretary general of the EU foreign policy service in Brussels, and Jean-Christophe Belliard, the deputy secretary general for political affairs and political director of the European External Action Service.
The meetings come amid lingering concerns that North Korea could conduct a missile or nuclear test to draw attention from Washington.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un said in his New Year's speech that the preparation for test-firing an intercontinental ballistic missile is in the final stages, adding that it could be conducted anytime and anywhere.