Nov. 5 (UPI) -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in says he is "worried" his next summit with Kim Jong Un might not take place on a dormant volcanic mountain because of a lack of infrastructure, according to a local press report.
Moon's comments come at a time when North Korea has threatened to restart nuclear buildup unless sanctions are lifted, and days ahead of a critical meeting between U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and top North Korean official Kim Yong Chol.
"Since I myself have been to the Cheonji crater lake [in Mount Paektu], I had told Chairman Kim I would take him to Mount Halla, but since there is no helipad on Mount Halla I am worried," the South Korean president said.
The mountain on the resort island of Jeju is a designated national park where flora and fauna are protected by law.
Moon was speaking with floor leaders of ruling and opposition parties, including with Kim Sung-tae of the right-wing Liberty Korea Party, CBS No Cut News reported Monday.
Kim said if the North Korean leader does visit the South, he should also visit South Korea's national cemetery and "apologize" to the families of the victims of the Cheonan warship sinking.
North Korea has denied responsibility for the attack that killed 46 seamen.
Moon's presidential office is downplaying reports of derogatory remarks from North Korean official Ri Son Kwon to visiting South Korean business executives in September.
Presidential spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom said Monday comments are "not enough to undermine the [North Korean] hospitality shown to President Moon Jae-in," Seoul Pyongyang News reported.
Kim also said the comments could have been taken out of context.
"In which case, compliments can become criticism, criticism can become compliments," the South Korean spokesman said.
Ri had asked the South Koreans whether the noodles they were eating for lunch were "making it down their 'throat-holes'."
Pompeo said over the weekend North Korea's threat on nuclear buildup on Friday does not worry him.
"We know with whom we're negotiating. We know what their positions are. And President Trump has made his position very clear: No economic relief until we have achieved our ultimate objective," he said in an appearance on CBS News.