North Korea announced on Friday that it has suspended key elements of its nuclear program, including the launching of long-range missiles and the nuclear testing in the northern part of the country, the Associated Press reports.
“From April 21, North Korea will stop nuclear tests and launches of intercontinental ballistic missiles,” the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said on April 20. “The North will shut down a nuclear test site in the country’s northern side to prove the vow to suspend nuclear test."
The shock announcement came ahead of North Korean dictator Kim John Un's planned historic summit with South Korean president Moon Jae-in, the Washington Post notes, the first such meeting between the two countries in more than a decade.
Moon's office also announced on Friday that the two Koreas had "opened a hotline between their leaders" ahead of the summit, Agence France-Presse reports.
On April 17, a report in South Korea's Munhwa Ilbo newspaper quoted an official claiming that the North and South planned on announcing an official end to the military conflict that has existed between the two since the Korean Armistice Agreement of 1953 ended open hostilities in the Korean War.
According to the Associated Press, Friday's decision was reached "in a meeting of the ruling party’s full Central Committee which had convened to discuss a 'new stage' of policies" regarding the bellicose regime.
Looming beyond next week's North-South summit lies the still-unscheduled meeting between Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump, a historic confab that officials from the CIA to the Department of State are reportedly scrambling to prepare for.
This is a developing story and will be updated with new information as it becomes available.
A new bill would give troops with infertility related to their military service greater access to advanced reproductive treatments, including up to three completed cycles of in vitro fertilization, or IVF, and cryopreservation of eggs and sperm for those heading to a combat zone.
U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Joseph L. Osterman, the commanding general of I Marine Expeditionary Force, speaks to Marines with the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) during a visit aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer (LHD 4). Marines and Sailors with the 11th MEU are conducting routine operations as part of the Boxer Amphibious Ready Group in the eastern Pacific Ocean. (U.S. Marine Corps Photo by Lance Cpl. Dalton S. Swanbeck)
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A Ruger AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, center, the same model, though in gray rather than black, used by the shooter in a Texas church massacre two days earlier, sits on display with other rifles on a wall in a gun shop Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017, in Lynnwood, Wash. (Associated Press/Elaine Thompson)
A new bill introduced in the Missouri House of Representatives would require a significant number of state residents own "at least one" AR-15 semi-automatic rifle with the help of a hefty tax break — except it won't ever get off the ground.
The casket carrying the remains of Scott Wirtz, a civilian employee of the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency killed along with three members of the U.S. military during a recent attack in Syria, sits in a military vehicle during a dignified transfer ceremony as they are returned to the United States at Dover Air Force Base, in Dover, Delaware, U.S., January 19, 2019. (Reuters/Kevin Lamarque)
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S.-backed forces have captured ISIS fighters tied to a January suicide bombing in Syria that killed four Americans, U.S. officials say, generating concrete leads for Washington about the deadliest attack to date there against U.S. personnel.