US welcomes home remains of presumed war dead from North Korea

North Korea Might Be Working On New ICBMs

Vice President Mike Pence spoke at a ceremony Wednesday to mark the arrival of the remains of USA servicemen from the Korean War - and joining him were two guests who lost their fathers in the war.

The July 27 honorable carry ceremony at Osan Air Base, South Korea, transferred 55 boxes of remains covered by the United Nations flag.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence stood watching with his hand over his heart as the troops carried the caskets into the hangar.

Pence on Wednesday met with Adm. Phil Davidson at the headquarters of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command in Hawaii.

The U.S. military will take the remains to a laboratory at the base for identification.

Of the roughly 7,700 missing US service members from the Korean War, approximately 5,300 are believed to be on North Korean soil.

Between 1990 and 2005, 229 sets of remains were returned to the USA, but co-operation halted as relations deteriorated alongside the development of North Korea's nuclear programme.

Trump declared soon after his summit with Kim that North Korea no longer posed nuclear threats, but Pyongyang has offered no details on its plan to denuclearize and subsequent talks have not gone smoothly.

He also confirmed a single military dog tag was provided with the remains and that the family of that soldier has been notified.

"We see them going to work, just as before", one United States official told the newspaper.

However, the cases only include one dog tag, so the identifying process could be hard and may take yeas to complete.

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A United States official noted to Reuters that this recent activity suggests North Korea may be looking to improve their missiles.

The remains will be examined at the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency, and experts there will be responsible for identifying the remains.

More than 7,700 U.S. troops who fought in the Korean war remain unaccounted for. A US military plane made a rare trip into North Korea to retrieve the 55 cases.

In late June, U.S. officials told U.S. media outlets that intelligence agencies believed North Korea had increased production of fuel for nuclear weapons and that it did not intend to fully give up its nuclear arsenal. Pence took to Twitter and said he was honoured to be there.

After 65 years of conflict, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un made a commitment to US President Donald Trump and returned the remains of the fallen.

The Trump-Kim summit yielded a joint statement, but no binding deal. But he cautioned it was unclear if that soldier's remains were among those received from North Korea.

The Korean War came less than five years after the end of World War II. Additionally, it became apparent in the days after the summit that the much-publicized destruction of the DPRK's primary nuclear weapons test site, an event it had invited American and other worldwide journalists to witness, was much less than met the eye and that the site could easily be rebuilt if needed in the future.

The U.S. military flew the remains from Osan Air Base in South Korea after they had undergone an initial review. But examination showed that the remains were from more than 208 individuals.

The Korean War ended in an armistice, not a peace treaty.

"Before determining whether it is true or not, I realized the people of the North and South regard our talks as important", Ahn said at the start of the meeting.

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