The DPRK returned to the same time zone with South Korea

Korean Unification Flag signed at International Tennis tournament

In retaliation, the USA has led the United Nations, including North Korea's close ally China, to impose the most stringent economic sanctions ever on the country.

The Trump-Kim talks are expected to take place in Korea's Demilitarized Zone, where Moon met the North's leader on April 27 for the first inter-Korean summit in more than a decade.

Chung may address the issue of a venue in Washington but he was more likely to discuss a "bigger deal" with U.S. officials pertaining to North Korea, the South Korean official said.

The Peace House at the DMZ was the venue for a meeting last month between Kim and South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

Mr Kim became the first North Korean leader to set foot in South Korea since the end of the Korean War in 1953.

In Washington the same day, the abductees' kin called for support as U.S. President Donald Trump prepares to meet with Kim.

The North's official news agency quoted a foreign ministry spokesman warning the USA about its position that such pressure will not be eased until North Korea gives up its nuclear weapons completely.

Other less dramatic but notable signs of rapprochement have emerged nearly daily, including North Korea moving its clocks forward by 30 minutes early Saturday to match time with the South.

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Al Jazeera's Kathy Novak, reporting from the South's capital, Seoul, said that "many people here are feeling a renewed hope about this country's relationship with North Korea".

"The President has not asked the Pentagon to provide options for reducing American forces stationed in South Korea", Bolton said in a statement.

The officials said, however, that a peace treaty between the two Koreas could diminish the need for the 23,500 USA soldiers now stationed on the peninsula, the newspaper said. Crucially, the two sides arrived, in a written agreement, at a specific timetable for upcoming high-level civil and military meetings, the resumption of reunion events among separated families (August 15), and visit of the South Korean president to Pyongyang (fall of 2018). South Korea explained USA troops want to stay in the area shortly with a peace treaty is concluded to replace the armistice.

Trump said that withdrawing USA forces from South Korea is "not on the table".

But the North's statement on Sunday seemed to be aimed at strengthening Mr Kim's position going into his meeting with Mr Trump.

After unexpectedly accepting an offer of talks made by Kim Jong Un in March this year, Trump has touted North Korea's offer to suspend nuclear and ballistic missile tests and discuss "denuclearization".

The North's comments could be seen as trying to strengthen its hand in the negotiations with Trump, who has demanded that it agree to the complete and verifiable dismantling of its nuclear weapons program.

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