Trump says US team in NKorea planning summit with Kim

South Korea's Moon Jae In makes a point to Kim Jong Un at their surprise Saturday confab

During Saturday's inter-Korean summit, the Korean leaders agreed to "positively cooperate with each other as ever to improve (North Korea)-US relations and establish (a) mechanism for permanent and durable peace". Kim and Choe know each other well - both were part of the delegations that negotiated the 2005 denuclearization agreement through the six-party framework.

It added that "top leaders" from the two nations would hold more talks on Friday. There is still uncertainty surrounding the meeting.

In addition to the team on North Korea that Pompeo set up previous year when he was Central Intelligence Agency director, he has now enlisted veteran United States diplomat Sung Kim to help in the process, a senior USA official said. However, it could not be immediately confirmed whether he was the Pentagon official involved in Sunday's talks.

Moon and Kim agreed at a surprise second meeting on Saturday that a possible North Korea-U.S. summit, now planned for June 12 in Singapore, must be held successfully, Moon told a news conference in Seoul.

The new preliminary talks are set to continue through Tuesday, and are being led by Sung Kim, a former US ambassador to South Korea who has held nuclear program negotiations with North Korea in the past.

"It looked like the real Kim Jong Un, but later I realised it's not the real one", said Sagar Admuthe who was visiting from Mumbai, India, after several selfies with the doppleganger against a backdrop of the city's bay.

On the Korean Peninsula, a surprise meeting between Mr. Kim and President Moon Jae-in of South Korea also produced some progress toward a meeting.

Moon, however, said that the process of drawing up a roadmap for denuclearization will not be easy.

But within 24 hours he said the meeting could still go ahead after productive talks were held with North Korean officials.

Kim Jong Un North Korea China
Kim Jong-un’s outbursts saw the summit cancelled but now it appears to be on again

On Thursday, Trump had called off the meeting scheduled for June 12 in Singapore, citing hostile remarks from the North. Pyongyang responded the following day, saying that it is open to meeting with the U.S. at any time, which then prompted Trump to hint at the possibility of the meeting going ahead as planned. It was the leaders' second meeting in as many months.

Analysts say the United States had wanted denuclearisation first - followed by rewards in the form of lifted sanctions and economic aid.

And I've never seen it, as a North Korea watcher, I've not seen North Korea actually praising a USA president. "It would be a great thing for South Korea, be great for Japan and great for the world - great for the United States, great for China".

She has also served as a nuclear negotiator and led the U.S. affairs division in the North Korean Foreign Ministry until being promoted to vice foreign minister this year. The daughter of a former premier, she is also thought to have direct access to Kim Jong Un.

Moon's surprise meeting with Kim on Saturday shows he's willing to do what it takes to keep diplomacy on track and avoid a return to threats of war over North Korea's nuclear program. But the rhetoric from Pyongyang suggests Kim Jong-un believes his nuclear arsenal puts him in a much stronger position than his father or grandfather and, because of that, he is very close to grasping the long-dreamed-of prize, a face-to-face summit with a U.S. president.

Still, it might be able to narrow the gap.

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

Has the summit date changed?

Earlier, State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said both countries are holding talks concerning the summit at the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ).


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