North Korea's delegation, the highest-ranking to visit the South and led by the younger sister of the North's leader Kim Jong Un, concluded its visit yesterday after charming and intriguing the South Korean public, but still faces deep scepticism over Pyongyang's sincerity towards improving relations.
"I never thought I would visit (the South) so suddenly and believed much would be odd and different but I saw many things that were similar or the same", said Kim Yo Jong in a toast during Sunday's dinner, adding she hoped to meet the "friendly faces" before her later in Pyongyang.
Lee made the remark during lunch with a high-level North Korean delegation, including the North Korean leader's sister and special envoy, Kim Yo-jong, and the country's ceremonial head of state, Kim Yong-nam.
The delegation will return to Pyongyang later today.
Leaders of North and South Korea have only met on two previous occasions.
"There is no daylight between the United States, the Republic of Korea and Japan on the need to continue to isolate North Korea economically and diplomatically until they abandon their nuclear and ballistic missile program", Vice President Mike Pence told reporters after a short visit here.
It was the US that appeared to be the one left in the cold, especially after the sister of the North Korean dictator extended an invitation from her brother for Moon to visit the North.
North Korea's Kim Jong Un invitations South Korean president for summit
The visit of the North's high-ranking delegation, which concluded on Sunday (February 11), has fascinated the South Korean public. He also warned that Seoul's ready acceptance of Pyongyang's overtures could damage its alliance with the US.
"There is no daylight between the USA, the Republic of Korea and Japan on the need to continue to isolate North Korea economically and diplomatically until they abandon their nuclear and ballistic missile programme", Pence told reporters during the return flight. He criticized the Trump administration for straining too hard to signal disgust of Kim Jong Un's government. While her visit is unquestionably significant and worth reporting, given that she is the first direct member of the Kim family to visit South Korea since the Korean War, the media has been fawning over her for days now, and it is absolutely maddening.
Even Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who has shared the American skepticism of warming North-South relations and pressed Moon against falling for the North's "smile diplomacy", greeted Kim Yong Nam.
Blue House spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom cited Moon as replying: "Let's create the environment for that to be able to happen".
On his flight to Alaska on Saturday, the vice president said he left Asia "encouraged that we will continue to work very closely to continue and intensify the maximum pressure campaign" against North Korea.
In recent years, Kim has risen through the ranks to become a member of the senior leadership and one of Kim Jong Un's most trusted advisers. Mr. Moon has said in the past that he only wanted to meet the North Korean leader if they can make progress on nuclear issues.
The North is a notoriously tough negotiator, adamant that it needs its "treasured sword" of nuclear weapons to defend itself against the threat of invasion by the United States, and will never give them up.