Saturday, 22 September, 2018

Pompeo: No timeline for North Korean denuclearization

North Korea is seeking a SUPPLIED North Korea is seeking a"new era, going forward
Charlie Simmons | 26 June, 2018, 16:09

During the summit, Kim reaffirmed a commitment toward complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula, while Trump said he would halt joint US-South Korean "war games."

Last year's event was held in Kim Il-sung Square with a reported 100,000 people attending.

On Monday, Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White said defense officials would only speak to military-related aspects of negotiations on North Korea and that there was "no specific timeline" for the diplomatic process. North Korea has already returned the remains of over 200 USA soldiers.

In the wake of their meeting the United States pledged to suspend military drills with ally South Korea, exercises that have infuriated the North for years.

The last inter-Korean family reunion took place in 2015.

Pyongyang has also rejected requests from Seoul to allow direct telephone communication and mail correspondence between separated families.

Lee's office followed up the statement confirming the artillery issue is being discussed "internally" but it has yet to be raised with the North Koreans.

The state department has since said it has no travel plans to announce.

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Those selected to participate are usually screened and instructed to ensure they praise the leader and describe their lives in the North in a positive light.

The decision comes after the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, met Donald Trump in Singapore this month in a historic summit.

But the leadership in Pyongyang does not seem ready to ease any restrictions that it may perceive as threatening the Kim family's hold on power.

Pyongyang's relations with Washington also appear to be on track since the Singapore summit, although a senior United States defence official stressed over the weekend that the U.S. would soon present North Korea with a timeline of "specific asks" on denuclearisation.

"One thing is really clear, is that the Kim Jong Un leadership is very much anxious about making important changes, exposing the system to the influence of outside powers", said Yonsei University's Bong Young-shik. However, no specific measures were mentioned.

Lee also said Monday he has confirmation North Korea is in the process of repatriating the remains of USA troops from the Korean War.

Trump announced last week that North Korea returned the remains of 200 USA or allied service members lost in the Korean War, while the Pentagon announced on Friday it would indefinitely suspend two training exercises with South Korea.

Referring to Trump's decision to suspend USA military exercises in the region, Pompeo said that "the President was clear".

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