Through his summits with South Korean President Moon Jae-in and US President Donald Trump, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un wants acceptance as a "leader of a new nuclear state," said North Korea's former deputy ambassador to the UK Thae Yong Ho.
Thae, who defected in 2016 and now lives in South Korea under heavy security for his own safety, spoke to CNN's Christiane Amanpour in Seoul but requested the exact location not be revealed.
"The propaganda ... in North Korea is saying quite different things to its citizens. (They say) the peaceful atmosphere around North Korea is the direct achievement and outcome of the completion of nuclear weapons and development."
He pointed to the location of the talks as an example of how different the two countries see the situation.
"That special area of Panmunjom is interpreted quite differently between North and South," Thae said. "In South Korea, it is a symbol of peace, which ended the Korean War. In North Korea, it's the place where America was forced to sign a surrender ... so Panmunjom is a symbol of victory."
"Now Kim Jong Un will appear there ... as the leader of a nuclear state, and will be very warmly welcomed, North Korea may (interpret this) quite differently for their own people," he predicted.