N Korea official Kim Yong-chol 'heads to U.S. for talks'

29 May, 2018, 11:45 | Author: Donnie King
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The U.S. and Japanese leaders agreed that they will meet ahead of a much anticipated summit with North Korea's Kim Jong Un back on schedule for June 12 in Singapore, just days after Trump announced he was canceling it.

In a tweet Sunday, President Trump said the US delegation had arrived in North Korea to continue planning for the summit with Kim Jong Un.

"I truly believe North Korea has brilliant potential and will be a great economic and financial Nation one day", Trump added.

"Because, if they don't have money, they can't launch missiles, they can't detonate nukes, and Kim Jong Un can't give gifts to senior regime members in order to buy loyalty, which means he has to give up his weapons".

The president's reference to a bright future echoes recent remarks by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo envisioning major investments by US companies and those of other nations if Kim ends his country's pariah status by giving up its nuclear arsenal.

Asian stocks and United States share futures gained on Monday, while shares in South Korean construction and railway firms surged after Trump said his officials and North Korea have resumed talks to prepare for the summit in June.

If confirmed, the visit would be part of a flurry of activity ahead of the proposed meeting between Mr Kim and US President Donald Trump.

Nauert provided no further details.

Sung, a South Korean born diplomat, is a former nuclear negotiator and current USA ambassador to the Philippines. Aides are cautiously optimistic this time will be different, even as they continue to express private misgivings about the compressed timeline to arrange the meeting.

But North Korea watchers have previously warned that things have been moving too fast, and urged Washington to hold more preparatory meetings in the run-up to a formal summit, CNN reported.

"It will happen!" Trump said, confirming that a U.S. team "has arrived in North Korea to make arrangements for the summit" between himself and North Korean leader.

The leaders of the two Koreas held a surprise meeting in a bid to save a summit with the US.

Before canceling the summit last week, Trump said that China had eased up enforcement of sanctions on its border.




The talks, which Moon said Kim Jong Un requested, capped a whirlwind 24 hours of diplomatic back and forth.

The fast and complete denuclearization of North Korea isn't a realistic goal, experts said. Analysts tell TIME that Trump's volatile handling of the summit may have alienated US allies and disrupted preparations.

Since then, North Korea has rejected USA demands for it to unilaterally abandon its nuclear weapons programme that experts say could threaten the United States.

A separate US advance team of 30 officials led by Joseph Hagin, the deputy White House chief of staff for operations, flew to Singapore Sunday to figure out logistics and security issue, along with how to handle press if the summit takes place.

American officials are sceptical Mr Kim would ever fully abandon his nuclear arsenal, and Mr Moon said North Korea was not yet convinced it can trust security guarantees from the United States.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in may possibly be joining the two leaders at the summit. More meetings will take place today.

Criticising the United States leader directly, Lord Hague added: "Trump is the one American leader of recent decades who could agree to that".

The general has always been a right hand man to North Korea's leader, playing a front-seat role during recent rounds of diplomacy aimed at ending the nuclear stalemate on the Korean peninsula. "It's good that the two will meet, and my hope is that would set the stage for more realistic, more direct, specific conversations later on".

Photos released by South Korea's presidential office showed Moon arriving at the North Korean side of the Panmunjom truce village on Saturday and shaking hands with Kim's sister, Kim Yo Jong, before sitting down with Kim for their summit. South Korea and China account for nearly all of North Korea's land borders, so their support is essential for enforcing sanctions ramped up a year ago after Mr Kim declared the ability to strike the United States with a nuclear weapon.

Moon on Sunday dodged a question on whether Kim clearly mentioned whether he would agree to the US demand for complete, verifiable, irreversible denuclearization.

Hooker, a former East Asian and Pacific affairs analyst with the U.S. State Department Bureau of Intelligence and Research, was appointed director for Korean affairs at the NSC in 2014.

A USA official told the Journal that the White House had been set to announce the sanctions as soon as Tuesday but will now delay them indefinitely as negotiations with North Korea continue.

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