North Korea, South Korea begin removing land mines along border

More than 1 million landmines were laid in border areas including the DMZ and the Civilian Control Zone in the South

But Trump, Pompeo and other US officials have recently reported progress in the denuclearization discussions with the North. Pompeo is to make his third trip to North Korea soon for talks.

Nuclear diplomacy later stalled due to suspicions over how honest North Korea is about its disarmament pledge, but US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is to visit Pyongyang this month to set up a second summit between US president Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

"But, if the U.S. doesn't want the end of war, the DPRK will also not particularly hope for it", it added, using the acronym of North Korea's official name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

Regarding Arrow Head Hill, where remains from the Korean War are believed to be buried after a fierce battle over the control of a strategically important hilltop position, the ministry aims to remove the land mines by the end of November before a joint excavation project kicks off.

Seoul's Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon told parliament the estimates on the size of North Korea's nuclear arsenal range from 20 bombs to as many as 60.

There was no immediate confirmation from North Korea that its troops had begun the process.

Many foreign experts say North Korea are likely running additional secret uranium-enrichment plants.

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"Even if we deployed 11 front-line engineering units to the DMZ and nearby area, it would take about 200 years to completely remove land mines scattered in the two Koreas", an Army official said during a meeting with reporters last month.

The move comes amid renewed global diplomacy on North Korea's nuclear program.

The North's foreign minister Ri Yong Ho also told the United Nations last month that there was "no way" his country would disarm first as long as the U.S. pushes for tough enforcement of sanctions against Pyongyang.

According to the South Korean military, the removal operations took place at two sites inside the Demilitarized Zone: the Joint Security Area at the border village of Panmunjom and Arrow Head Hill in mountainous Gangwon Province.

They have already dismantled propaganda loudspeakers and some guard posts along the border.

The summit was the third this year between the leaders, following a rapid thaw in relations. In a speech marking South Korea's 70th Armed Forces Day, Moon also called for a stronger national defense, saying "peace can continue only when we have power and are confidant of protecting ourselves". He also said the north is committed to helping maintain "long lasting peace and prosperity" on the peninsula.

The North entered talks with the United States and South Korea on its advancing nuclear arsenal earlier this year, saying it's willing to negotiate.

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