Thursday, 18 October, 2018

Summit With North Korea Is Back On

Kim Yong Chol touched down in New York City on Wednesday afternoon Kim Yong Chol touched down in New York City on Wednesday afternoon
Jay Anderson | 02 June, 2018, 04:29

- President Donald Trump says his meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is back on for June 12.

"Our two countries face a pivotal moment in our relationship, and it would be nothing short of tragic to let this opportunity go to waste", Mr Pompeo said in NY after meeting with Mr Kim.

Trump said he was hopeful his summit with Kim would take place on June 12 as originally scheduled but left open the possibility talks would fall through.

White House officials maintain that Trump was hopeful the North was merely negotiating but that he was prepared for the letter to mark the end of the two-month flirtation.

Kim Yong Chol became the first North Korea official in 18 years to visit the White House since President Bill Clinton met in the Oval Office with Jo Myong Rok, a top military official and attache to Kim Jong Il, the current leader's father.

The flurry of diplomacy has also seen a rapprochement on the Korean peninsula, with the two Koreas holding high-level talks Friday at the border truce village of Panmunjom to discuss their ongoing efforts to improve ties.

There were reports earlier on Wednesday that South Korean officials were noting "quite significant" differences between the United States and North Korea over denuclearization.

"I look forward to the day I can take the sanctions off North Korea", Trump said.

He tweeted from New York: "Good progress today during our meetings" with Kim and his team.

Trump wrote in his letter last week that the talks would be "inappropriate" following the "hostility" from North Korea.

The president told reporters "we're going to deal".




After the meeting, Trump and Kim Yong Chol posed for photos on the White House lawn.

The president said they met for two hours.

The White House emphasised that it has remained in close contact with South Korean and Japanese officials as preparations for the talks continue.

'Mike (Pompeo, Secretary of State) has spent two days doing this, we've gotten to know their people very well.

It's all a process.

Before heading off to Camp David for the weekend with Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, Donald Trump Jr. and Tiffany Trump, Trump then said he hadn't actually read the letter yet.

The task before Trump is particularly daunting in this case, since never before has a country with a nuclear program as advanced as Kim Jong Un's simply given it away. "It is very important to them".

He said a number of summits might be required.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov walks with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Pyongyang during their meeting on Thursday.

Lavrov met with Kim after one of his aides headed to NY for talks to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in an attempt to salvage a summit between President Trump and the dictator. But there are lingering doubts on whether he will ever fully relinquish his nuclear arsenal, which he may see as his only guarantee of survival in a region surrounded by enemies. But he has since put it back on track following a conciliatory statement from the regime.

Mike Pompeo says the U.S.is moving forward, hoping for historic achievement. He was carrying a letter for Trump directly from Kim Jong Un. "That I can tell you".

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