FILE PHOTO: U.S. Special Representative for North Korea Policy Joseph Yun arrives at a meeting with the media in Bangkok, Thailand December 15, 2017. REUTERS/Jorge Silva/File Photo
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One of the US's top diplomats and experts on North Korea is set to retire this Friday, leaving a gap at the top of US policymaking and diplomacy towards the reclusive regime during a delicate period.

Joseph Yun, a special representative for North Korean policy at the US State Department, said it was a personal decision and it was the right time to retire.

On Sunday, a top North Korean official said the country was willing to engage in dialogue with the US in an apparent diplomatic breakthrough that followed months of high tensions between the two nations.

The US is currently without an ambassador in Seoul, complicating the State Department's ability to conduct diplomacy.

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