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Moon and Trump talk, missile payload limits will be lifted

Sept 05,2017
President Moon Jae-in and U.S. President Donald Trump agreed Monday to lift limits on payloads allowed on South Korean missiles in response to North Korea’s sixth and most powerful nuclear test Sunday, the Blue House said.

Moon and Trump had a phone call from 10:45 p.m. till 11:24 p.m. and discussed reactions to Pyongyang’s nuclear test. The North said Sunday that it detonated a hydrogen bomb that can be loaded onto an intercontinental ballistic missile.

“As an effective countermeasure, the two leaders agreed to lift the cap on the missile payloads imposed under the Korea-U.S. missile guidelines,” Presidential Spokesman Park Soo-hyun said.

The bilateral agreement signed in 1979 and revised in 2012 banned Seoul from developing ballistic missiles with a ranges over 800 kilometers (497 miles) and payloads exceeding 500 kilograms (0.5 metric tons). South Korea has wanted to revise it to produce more powerful missiles.

Trump also reaffirmed the American commitment to defend South Korea, the Blue House said.

Moon told Trump that his government will provide full support to complete the U.S. military’s deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (Thaad) antimissile system in the South.

BY SER MYO-JA ser.myoja@joongang.co.kr