In the ASEAN summit held on Sunday, Kang Kyung-wha, South Korea’s foreign minister had a brief conversation with her North Korean counterpart, Ri Yong Ho. This meeting happened on the sidelines of a forum the BBC reported.

One of the concerns raised during the discussion was the recurring missile tests conducted by North Korea. This created tensions on the Korean peninsula, which have gradually intensified over the past several months. As a preemptive measure, the UN Security Council decided to impose new sanctions.

In this regard, South Korea saw a possible move that might alleviate tensions by proposing dialogues with North Korea.

The South started this proposal just last month, believing that such act would finally unite families estranged by the Korean War. However, no official statement has been released by Pyongyang.

Will the North finally unite with the South?

What transpired in a brief and unarranged meeting between the two foreign ministers might be a start of a possibly good relationship. The two were reported to have shaken hands at an official dinner event held by the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations). A South Korean foreign ministry official confirmed that the meeting between the two ministers really took place.

Talks offered by the South were brushed off by Mr. Ri. The rejection may have sprung from the new sanctions on North Korea.

On Monday, Pyongyang's closest ally expressed his views on North Korea’s upfront rejection. Wang Yi, China’s foreign minister told the press that North Korea has not completely rejected South Korea’s proposals, adding that China as also supports the South’s initiatives.

What the US thinks of South’s initiatives

The US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, was also present during the forum.

He talked about the UN Security Council’s unanimous vote on imposing new sanctions on the country. According to Tillerson, the UN Security Council remains firm in its strong stand in putting an end to missile tests in North Korea. He also emphasized China and Russia’s participation in the vote.

In the past, Russia and China differed in opinion from the rest of the Security Council members in handling Pyongyang.

Nevertheless, the two countries joined the others in calls to stop missile tests in North Korea. They also urged South Korea and the US to stop carrying out military drills.

Concerning the new sanctions on North Korea, According to a report by Al Jazeera, North Korea reacted to the sanctions in a statement, calling them "a "violent violation of our sovereignty," and according to the official Korean Central News Agency, they also said they would take "righteous action" in return. Many people believe that any nuclear sanction by the U.S. will invite hostility and result in war.