Donald Trump, South Korea's Moon Jae In to meet at White House on May 22

Trump and Moon shake hands during a bilateral meeting at the Blue House in Seoul, on Nov 7, 2017.
Trump and Moon shake hands during a bilateral meeting at the Blue House in Seoul, on Nov 7, 2017.PHOTO: NYTIMES

WASHINGTON (AFP) - President Donald Trump will host South Korean counterpart Moon Jae In for talks at the White House on May 22, as anticipation builds for much-awaited meetings with the North’s leader.

“This third summit between the two leaders affirms the enduring strength of the United States-Republic of Korea alliance and the deep friendship between our two countries,” the White House said in a statement.

Moon met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un last month, and both sides promised to pursue the complete denuclearisation of the peninsula and a permanent peace.

North Korea has offered to close its nuclear test site this month – and invited US experts to verify the move.

“President Trump and President Moon will continue their close coordination on developments regarding the Korean Peninsula following the April 27 inter-Korean Summit,” the White House added.

“The two leaders also will discuss President Trump’s upcoming meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.”

The US president suggested earlier this week that the Demilitarised Zone between the two Koreas – scene of the historic Kim-Moon talks – could also be an appropriate venue for his own meeting with Kim.