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South Korean president Moon's approval rating rebounds on handling of North Korea

South Korean President Moon Jae-in delivers a speech during a ceremony celebrating the 99th anniversary of the March First Independence Movement against Japanese colonial rule, at Seodaemun Prison History Hall in Seoul, South Korea, March 1, 2018. REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korean President Moon Jae-in’s approval rating has improved after his administration brokered new talks with North Korea, rebounding from a hit it took in the run up to last month’s Winter Olympics.

Moon’s approval rating stands at 71 percent, the highest since mid-January, Gallup Korea reported Friday.

Most of those who felt positive about Moon pointed to the resumption of talks with North Korea and his security policy as reasons for their support.

The survey was completed before South Korean officials announced that U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un had agreed to meet personally, in what could be a potentially dramatic breakthrough in the North Korea nuclear standoff.

In January, Moon’s approval rating fell to a four-month low after a public backlash over reports his government would ban virtual currencies, and a decision for South and North Korea to field a joint ice hockey team at next month’s Winter Olympics.

Reporting by Josh Smith; Editing by Lincoln Feast