Détente has been enforced step by step on the Korean Peninsula after last week's historic summit between South Korean President Moon Jae-in and top leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) Kim Jong Un.
Moon and Kim met on the South Korean side of the border village of Panmunjom last Friday, and Kim became the first DPRK leader to set foot on South Korean soil since the end of the 1950-53 Korean War.
The two leaders agreed to the complete denuclearization and the declaration of an end to the Korean War by the end of this year that will lead to altering the current armistice agreement into a peace treaty. The peninsula remains technically at war as the war ended with armistice.
As a first step for the nuclear-free Korean Peninsula, Kim agreed to openly close the Punggye-ri nuclear test site in northeast DPRK, where all of its six nuclear tests were conducted. During the summit, Kim told Moon that he would invite South Korean and U.S. experts and journalists in May to the DPRK to allow them to witness the shutdown.
Nine out of 10 South Koreans positively assessed the result of the third inter-Korean summit. According to a survey by local broadcaster MBC, 88.7 percent said the summit bore fruits.
Among the respondents, 86.3 percent forecast the DPRK-U.S. summit will bear fruits. Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump are expected to hold the first-ever DPRK-U.S. summit in May or early June.
The results were based on a poll of 1,023 voters conducted by local pollster Korea Research Center from Sunday to Monday. It had 3.1 percentage points in margin of error with a 95 percent confidence level.
South Korean experts told local broadcaster YTN that the DPRK showed its sincerity toward denuclearization, raising the possibility for a successful DPRK-U.S. summit.
Meanwhile, Moon asked the United Nations (UN) to observe a planned DPRK shutdown of its nuclear test site during his phone conversation with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres on Tuesday.
To defuse military tension on the peninsula, South Korea began Tuesday to pull back loudspeakers, which had been used for psychological warfare against the DPRK, from the frontline border areas. The DPRK was said to remove propaganda loudspeakers beginning the same day.
Under the Panmunjom Declaration signed and announced by Moon and Kim after the summit, the two sides agreed to change the military demarcation line (MDL), which has divided the two Koreas since the end of the Korean War, into an actual peace zone by stopping all hostile acts toward each other.
Ahead of the summit, South Korea already stopped blaring anti-DPRK broadcasts through the loudspeakers.
According to the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), the DPRK will reset Pyongyang time to GMT+09:00, half an hour earlier than the present time beginning May 5 to "unify the times of the north and the south."
During his summit meeting with Moon, Kim proposed unifying the times of the two Koreas before doing anything else, saying, "it was a painful wrench to see two clocks indicating Pyongyang and Seoul times hanging on a wall of the summit venue."
Previously, South Korea and the DPRK used an identical standard time. In August 2015, when inter-Korean relations deteriorated, the DPRK pushed back its standard time by 30 minutes.