The two Koreas have installed a “hotline” that connects President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Friday and had the first trial telephone communication. This is the first time for the leaders of South Korea and North Korea to install a direct telephone line in their offices since the division of the Korean Peninsula.
“The historic first call on the direct line between the two Koreas ended just a while ago,” presidential secretary Youn Kun-young said. “The test call took place at around 3:41 p.m."
The hotline between the leaders of the two Koreas was installed on top of a desk in the South's presidential office on the third floor of Yeomingwan. North Korea has also been known to have installed the hotline at the building of its ruling Workers’ Party in Pyongyang where Kim Jong Un’s office is located. “This is the first time in 70 years in Korea to have a telephone connection between the leaders of the two Koreas anywhere at any time including the presidential residence,” said an official from the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae.
After finishing the instalment of a hotline, both Koreas engaged in a telephone conversation as another presidential secretary, Song In-bae, made a direct call to an official at North Korea’s State Affairs Commission. "Yes, this is Pyongyang," said an official from the North as Mr. Song made the phone call. "Hello? Can you hear me? This is Cheong Wa Dae," replied Mr. Song. The two officials had a conversation for some 3 minutes and 2 seconds. Cheong Wa Dae announced that North Korea called South Korea again afterwards to check the status of the hotline and engaged in a telephone conversation of 4 minutes and 19 seconds in total on two separate occasions on that day.
With the “hotline” opened, President Moon is expected to have the first telephone conversation with his North Korean counterpart prior to the summit.