N. Korea sanctions may be eased before full denuclearization – Seoul

South Korea said Monday that sanctions against Pyongyang could be eased once it takes “substantive steps” towards denuclearization, AFP reports. However, Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha said that Seoul’s stance is that “the sanctions must remain in place until North Korea takes meaningful, substantive steps towards denuclearization.” Seoul and Washington shared the same “big picture” view and would continue close consultations, she added. The comments come just days after China’s Foreign Ministry suggested that the UN Security Council could consider easing the economic punishment of its Cold War-era ally.