SEOUL, Jan. 2 (Xinhua) -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Tuesday welcomed the New Year's address by Kim Jong Un, top leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), ordering government officials to resume inter-Korean dialogue and draw up follow-up measures.
Moon said at this year's first cabinet meeting that Kim positively responded to Seoul's offer to make the upcoming PyeongChang Winter Olympics an epoch-making opportunity for peace and improved inter-Korean relations.
The South Korean president welcomed the DPRK leader's New Year speech, ordering the unification and the culture and sports ministries to rapidly restore inter-Korean talks and draw up follow-up measures to make it possible for the DPRK delegation to participate in the PyeongChang Winter Olympics.
Kim said in his New Year's speech Monday that the DPRK will take necessary measures to prepare to participate in the South Korea-hosted winter sports event, including the inter-Korean dialogue on the DPRK's participation.
The PyeongChang Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games were scheduled to be held in February in South Korea's namesake county of PyeongChang in the eastern Gangwon province.
President Moon said last month that annual springtime war games between South Korea and the United States can be delayed if the DPRK refrains from conducting any provocation, calling on Pyongyang to participate in the winter sports event to make the PyeongChang Olympics a peace Olympic.
Moon said he had proposed the delayed South Korea-U.S. war games to Washington, which was reviewing his offer.
During the cabinet meeting, Moon said improving inter-Korean relations is not a separate issue from resolving the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula, ordering the foreign ministry to closely cooperate with its allies and the international community to push for improving inter-Korean ties and denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula.
Moon's ruling Democratic Party also hailed the DPRK leader's New Year address, stressing the importance for inter-Korean dialogue.
Woo Won-sik, floor leader of the Democratic Party, told this year's first party meeting that if the DPRK takes part in the PyeongChang Olympics, it will be held peacefully and can open a door to peacefully resolving the Korean Peninsula issues.
He said the government and the ruling party should make inter-Korean talks possible so that the DPRK's peace message will lead to the success of the PyeongChang Olympics and peace on the peninsula.