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NORTH KOREA: US-NK SUMMIT TUESDAY 12 JUNE
by Elizabeth Kendal
Doubtless motivated by the huge success of the 27 April Inter-Korea Summit, Kim Jong-un, in a goodwill gesture aimed at easing tensions before the US-NK Summit, released three American citizens incarcerated in North Korea. Kim Dong-chul, Tony Kim and Kim Hak-song flew home with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on 9 May. But no sooner had one source of tension been removed, than US First National Security Adviser John Bolton stoked another by suggesting that Libya could serve as a model for NK's denuclearisation [see NOTE below]. Though President Trump refuted the comment, even publicly asserting that regime-change was not on the agenda, tensions exploded. Belligerent rhetoric filled the air; the talks were off! Then, on 1 June, after weeks of intensive diplomatic activity, President Trump announced that the talks were back on.
|US Pres. Donald Trump (l) to meet |
Kim Jong-un (r) in Singapore, 12 June
If all goes according to plan, then US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will meet in Singapore on Tuesday 12 June to take the first of many steps on what we hope will be the road to a brighter future. The US's stated goal is complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation (CVID); this is a big step. In reality, the most likely outcome would be a series of smaller steps or interim accords with more modest achievements, such as a freeze on missile tests and a suspension of missile production in exchange for an easing of sanctions [see RLPB 446 North Korea: A Step in the Right Direction (14 March 2018)].
|Russia FM Sergey Lavrov with |
Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang, 31 May
People opposed to this path of peace -- both in the KPA and the US government -- will doubtless seek to undermine and even derail what is, in the words of Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, 'an important but fragile process'. The greatest opponent is sure to be Satan himself, for he knows full well that East Asia is not merely 'one of the globe's most dynamic economic regions', but one of the globe's most spiritually dynamic, mission-focused regions as well. Peace on the Korean Peninsula is about far more than geopolitics. Be assured; 'principalities and powers' (see Ephesians 6:12) are committed to its failure. Therefore we pray!
|North Korean children in a |
For more on the humanitarian situation,
see: Asia Times online 15 May
* bind and restrain all evil forces that would seek to sow chaos and sustain repression where God seeks to sow peace and deliver liberty.
* take and use North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, US President, Donald Trump and South Korean President, Moon Jae-in, as his instruments, for his purpose, in answer to the prayers of many.
* sustain and richly bless the long-suffering and severely persecuted remnant Church in North Korea.
May religious freedom be realised. May the Church's days of suffering soon be over. May the Church be free to serve NK's 'harassed and helpless' and bring Gospel light to those in darkness.
'Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.' (Ephesians 3:20-21 ESV)
SUMMARY FOR BULLETINS UNABLE TO RUN THE WHOLE ARTICLE
US-NORTH KOREA SUMMIT TUESDAY 12 JUNE
US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un are due to meet in Singapore on Tuesday 12 June to take the first of many steps on what we hope will be the road to a brighter future. In North Korea, Kim Jong-un has replaced the state's top three military leaders with younger leaders more amenable to economic development and engagement with the world. However, peace on the Korean Peninsula is about far more than geopolitics; spiritual 'principalities and powers' are committed to its failure. East Asia is not merely one of the globe's most dynamic economic regions, but one of the world's most spiritually dynamic, mission-focused regions. Therefore we pray for the Lord's will to prevail and that peace and religious freedom will be realised on the Korean Peninsula.
NOTE: Libya's denuclearisation and the West's subsequent betrayal of Muammar Gaddafi -- who was handed to his Islamist enemies and violently lynched -- is covered at length in After Saturday Comes Sunday: Understanding the Christian Crisis in the Middle East, pages 78-79, and chapter 6, 'The Arab Spring'. This is why North Korea will not denuclearise (see also, RLPB 423, North Korea: Talks the Only Option, 13 Sept 2017).
She has authored two books: Turn Back the Battle: Isaiah Speaks to Christians Today (Deror Books, Melbourne, Australia, Dec 2012) which offers a Biblical response to persecution and existential threat; and After Saturday Comes Sunday: Understanding the Christian Crisis in the Middle East (Wipf and Stock, Eugene, OR, USA, June 2016).