S.Korean PM hosts lunch for high-ranking DPRK delegation

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Kim Yo Jong, the younger sister of Kim Jong Un, "courteously" handed over a personal letter from the North Korean leader to Moon during talks on Saturday and also told Moon of her brother's "intention", KCNA said, without elaborating on what that was.

The result mattered less than the political symbolism, however, as around 200 of North Korea's famed "army of beauties" charmed a crowd of 3,600 besotted locals with nostalgic oldies - and even broke out a Mexican wave.

Speaking about the possibility of meeting with North Korean officials, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said that he would "wait and see" but use any opportunity to pressure Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear ambitions.

Outside, many locals, bundled up against the cold, wore the joint team's jersey with "KOREA" emblazoned across their chests and waved mini unification flags - a pale blue silhouette of the Korean peninsula.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has invited South Korean President Moon Jae-in to meet with him in the North for a summit, Moon's spokesman said Saturday morning.

"It has to create a virtuous cycle where improvement on the inter-Korean ties can bring positive influence on the US-North Korea denuclearisation talks".

As for Kim Yo Jong herself, she isn't just a figurehead.

However, South Korea's main opposition party warned any talks between the two Koreas where the scrapping of North Korea's nuclear programme was not a precondition would only "benefit the enemy".

Among the most shocking of North Korea's human rights abuses is the "three generations of punishment" rule.

Two South Korean presidents, both of them progressives, have gone to Pyongyang for summits before, both with Kim Jong Un's father.

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Media have reported Pyeongchang is spelled with an "e" for the same reason, but that change in 2000 has little to do with North Korea.

Meanwhile, North Korea's main newspaper Rodong Sinmun said in its Monday edition that the delegation has returned to Pyongyang, adding that the trip "served as a significant occasion in improving relations between the North and the South and setting up a peace environment on the Korean Peninsula".

However, challenges loom large as the allies may clash over the approaches to achieving the goal of denuclearisation, analysts said, as Moon may face a tough choice between going along with Trump's "maximum pressure" campaign and engaging with the North to ease cross-border tensions after the Olympics.

Douglas Paal, a former senior US diplomat under previous Republican administrations, said North Korea held the propaganda edge for now because, "it's tough not to get caught up in the emotions of an Olympics event".

Many members of the orchestra arrived at the eastern port city of Donghae on Tuesday aboard the North Korean ferry Mangyongbong-92, as an exemption to sanctions imposed in retaliation for the North's torpedoing of a South Korean Navy vessel in 2010.

The younger Kim, who came here as a special envoy of the DPRK leader, delivered the DPRK leader's invitation for Moon to visit Pyongyang at Moon's convenient time.

A Blue House official said Moon "practically accepted" the invitation.

At the start of the meeting, Lee shook hands with the North's chief delegate and then with Kim Yo-jong, as well as other members of the delegation.

There were South Koreans who agreed with Pence's stance. It had shown no interest so far in negotiating over demands to give up its nuclear and missile programs. A big one could be a demand to cease the U.S. He supported Pence's moves to meet with North Korean defectors, paying respects at a memorial to the 46 South Korean sailors killed in a 2010 torpedo attack blamed on the North. Pence also invited as his Olympics guest the father of US college student Otto Warmbier, who died after he was imprisoned by North Korea for stealing a propaganda poster.

Pyongyang conducted its largest nuclear test previous year and in November tested its most advanced intercontinental ballistic missile that experts said has the range to reach anywhere in the United States. Kim Jong Un and Kim Yo Jong have the same mother, Ko Yong Hui.