Tuesday, 25 September, 2018

Korea: Kim commits to summit with Trump, denuclearization

Korea: Kim commits to summit with Trump, denuclearization Korea: Kim commits to summit with Trump, denuclearization
Charlie Simmons | 29 May, 2018, 11:28

As of Sunday, Trump said on Twitter: "I truly believe North Korea has brilliant potential and will be a great economic and financial Nation one day".

The two countries, as well as South Korea, have since worked to reschedule the meeting, with the White House this weekend sending a team of US officials to Singapore to meet with North Koreans and prepare should the summit go forward.

Even critics of Trump's speedy approach to the talks, talks of a potential Nobel Prize, and subsequent return to vows of the use of military force if North Korea doesn't comply with USA terms, said they expect the talks to move forward in order to avoid losing ground.

South Korean President Moon met the North Korean leader Saturday for a second time at the border village of Panmunjom, a month after the pair convened there to proclaim "a new era of peace" on the peninsula.

The leaders of North and South Korea had discussed a three-way summit on April 27 at their first meeting in Panmunjom.

A team of US government officials, including Joe Hagin, the White House deputy chief of staff for operations, left the US Yokota air base in Japan for Singapore on Monday, NHK said.

The Washington Post reported that the group was being led by Sung King, the U.S. ambassador to the Philippines, who formerly served as United States envoy to South Korea and as a nuclear negotiator with the North.

Mr. Moon said he told Mr. Kim in return that Mr. Trump has a "firm resolve" to end hostile relations with North Korea and initiate economic cooperation if Pyongyang implements "complete denuclearization". US President Donald Trump last week pulled out of a meeting with Kim, planned for June 12 in Singapore, before floating its reinstatement. U.S. officials said the most likely document would provide a framework for future negotiations, without going into great detail about what North Korea might be willing to give up or what steps the United States would take in exchange.

After weeks of political posturing by both Trump and Kim, analysts welcomed the news the United States had dispatched a team of seasoned negotiators to hold several days of preparatory talks with the North Koreans.

Mr. Trump announced last week he was ending them over North Korean hostilities but now says negotiations have picked back up and he spoke Sunday as if the summit was a "go".

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The Post said the meetings would continue on Monday and Tuesday at Tongilgak, the North's building in Panmunjom, where the truce suspending the 1950-53 Korean War was signed.

According to Reuters, the impersonator had been in town to wish success for the summit, held to negotiate an end to North Korea's nuclear programme.

According to reports, Trump has demanded that Pyongyang carry out a swift denuclearisation approach, while North Korea reportedly favours a gradual drawdown.

Despite Kim's apparent eagerness for a summit with Trump, there are lingering doubts about whether he will fully relinquish his nuclear weapons, which he may see as his only guarantee of survival. A day later after the cancellation, Trump said he had reconsidered, and officials from both countries met to work out details.

Kim Yong Chol, vice chairman of North Korea's ruling Workers' Party Central Committee, watches the closing ceremony.

Pentagon official Randall Schriver was part of the USA team, the official said.

In a letter addressed to Kim, President Trump said due to the "tremendous anger and open hostility" expressed in a recent statement, he believed it would be "inappropriate" to hold the meeting.

It would be the first meeting between sitting leaders of the United States and North Korea. 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 Kim declared the ability to strike the US with a nuclear weapon.

US officials have talked about a comprehensive one-shot deal in which North Korea eliminates its nukes first and receives rewards later.

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