Published: Sat, June 02, 2018
World | By Camille Rivera

Kim says committed to denuclearisation of Korean peninsula

Kim says committed to denuclearisation of Korean peninsula

I never said that it will happen in one meeting. Relationships are building. It will be a beginning...

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. Mr Trump suddenly withdrew from the meeting last week, only to announce a day later that it could still get back on track.

The White House emphasised that it has remained in close contact with South Korean and Japanese officials as preparations for the talks continue. Instead, the officials said, it brought both sides to the table with increasing seriousness, as they work through myriad logistical and policy decisions to keep June 12 a viable option for the summit.

US President Donald Trump says he is looking forward to reading a letter from Kim Jong-un, due to be personally delivered by one of the North Korean leader's top aide's later on Friday local time.

The meeting followed two landmark summits between the leaders of North and South Korea in the last five weeks. By the next day, he was signalling the event could be back on after a conciliatory response from North Korea. He was met outside the West Wing by the White House chief of staff, John Kelly, and the head of the CIA Korea department, Andrew Kim, who ushered the 72-year-old regime veteran into the Oval Office to meet Trump and hand over a personal letter.

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Mr Trump made the announcement after talks with a senior North Korean envoy at the White House. Trump's open letter to Kim last week cancelling the summit, the aides said, was created to pressure the North on the global stage for appearing to have cold feet.

Kim has previously made harsher comments and even threatened to launch nuclear attacks on the United States numerous times.

Kim Jong Un's comment on USA hegemonism wasn't carried by the North's official Korean Central News Agency, which targets an external audience.

"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.

Pompeo warned at a news conference after talks with Kim Yong Chol in NY on Wednesday and Thursday that the path to better relations would not be easy.

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Kim says he is committed to "denuclearisation" in some form, but he is expected to demand security guarantees - one of which could be an formal end to the conflict with the US and South Korea.

There had been speculation in the South Korean media that Gen. Kim would be carrying a letter for Mr. Trump to respond to the one the president sent to the North Korean leader last week.

"It will take bold leadership from Chairman Kim Jong Un if we were able to seize this once in a lifetime opportunity to change the course for the world", Pompeo said Thursday.

"I don't even want to use the term "maximum pressure" anymore", Trump added, referencing his preferred term for the punishing US economic sanctions against North Korea. 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. The two sides do not expect to side any agreement on June 12, he said.

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North Korea has carried out six nuclear tests and numerous tests of ballistic missiles, all the while maintaining a barrage of belligerent rhetoric against its enemies, particularly the US. "That I can tell you".

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