Tuesday, 23 October, 2018

Trump revives summit with N/Korea leader

Kim Yong Chol touched down in New York City on Wednesday afternoon Kim Yong Chol touched down in New York City on Wednesday afternoon
Leonard Rios | 03 June, 2018, 02:52

It was a extraordinary softening of tone toward North Korea from a president who previous year threatened to rain "fire and fury" on the country because of the threat its nuclear weapons and long-range missiles pose to the United States.

The president said he believed Kim wanted a deal. "Hey, wouldn't it be wonderful if we walked out and everything was settled all of a sudden from sitting down for a couple of hours", Trump said. Washington is determined that Kim should agree to what USA officials call the "complete, verifiable and irreversible" end of North Korea's nuclear weapons and intercontinental missile programs.

Kim says he is committed to "denuclearization" in some form, but he is expected to demand security guarantees - one of which could be an formal end to the conflict with the USA and South Korea. The announcement came after Trump hosted a senior North Korean envoy at the White House, who conveyed a personal letter by Kim that was inside a white envelope almost as large as a folded newspaper.

Representatives of the Koreas, meanwhile, agreed Friday to hold "inter-Korean general-level military talks" June 14 to ease military tensions on the Korean Peninsula, according to South Korea's Unification Ministry.

China does not welcome United States presence in its neighbourhood, with speculation that it had suggested to Mr Kim to ask for troop withdrawal at the negotiating table with the US.

At the dialogue on Saturday, he also expressed his gratitude to Singapore for hosting the summit at short notice, saying the island-state had "taken it all in stride". "I think they're OK", Trump said of relations between the two nations. "I purposely didn't open the letter", Trump said.

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Trump Revives Hope for June 12 Summit With Kim in Singapore
Kim is also widely believed to be behind the 2010 sinking of the Cheonan, a South Korean Naval vessel, in which 46 seamen died. A vice chairman of the ruling Workers' Party, Kim Yong Chol has been deeply involved in North Korean diplomacy this year.

"Kim Jong Un said that the DPRK´s will for denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula still remains unchanged and consistent and fixed", KCNA reported after their meeting in Pyongyang on Thursday.

"We're not going to go in and sign something on June 12th, and we never were", Trump told reporters on the White House lawn. Kim Yong Chol's trip to Washington was clearly a tit-for-tat after U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo traveled to Pyongyang, North Korea's capital, twice in recent weeks for pre-summit negotiations with Kim.

While the reporters said yes to the question they also discovered for the umpteenth time how much Trump lies. He said it "went very well".

The comments in Singapore came as Trump confirmed the June 12 talks were officially back on after initially cancelling the summit and days of ambiguity on whether it would be reinstated. "Japan does, South Korea does, and I think China does", Trump concluded.

Pompeo was in the room as Trump and Kim Yong Chol met.

Wall Street took word from Trump that the summit was back on in stride.

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