2nd US-NKorea Summit Focus of Talks 01/18 06:28
High-level talks aimed at finalizing a second summit between President
Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un are planned for this week in
Washington, U.S. officials said.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- High-level talks aimed at finalizing a second summit
between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un are planned
for this week in Washington, U.S. officials said.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is expected to meet former North Korean spy
chief Kim Yong Chol at a Washington hotel on Friday. The meeting will likely be
followed by a Kim visit to the White House, where he could meet with Trump,
according to two officials, who were not authorized to discuss the matter
publicly and spoke Thursday on condition of anonymity.
Neither the U.S. nor North Korea has announced any meetings, although Kim
Yong Chol arrived earlier Thursday in Beijing, where he was booked on a flight
to the U.S., South Korea's Yonhap News Agency reported. A motorcade that
included the North Korean ambassador's car and a Chinese car with a sign
reading "state guest" could be seen departing from a VIP area at the airport.
Trump has spoken several times of having a second summit with Kim early this
year and has exchanged multiple letters with the North Korean despite little
tangible progress on a vague denuclearization agreement reached at their first
meeting in Singapore last June. Since then, several private analysts have
published reports detailing continuing North Korean development of nuclear and
At a conference of U.S. diplomats at the State Department on Wednesday, Vice
President Mike Pence acknowledged the lack of progress. He called the Trump-Kim
dialogue "promising" but stressed that "we still await concrete steps by North
Korea to dismantle the nuclear weapons that threaten our people and our allies
in the region."
A planned meeting between Pompeo and Kim Yong Chol in New York last November
was called off abruptly. U.S. officials said at the time that North Korea had
canceled the session.
A White House official, while not confirming plans for Friday's meeting,
said "a lot of positive things" are happening related to North Korea's
denuclearization. The official said Trump and Kim Jong Un had established a
"good relationship" and that U.S.-North Korea conversations were continuing.
The official, who also spoke on condition of anonymity, said the two sides
were "working to make progress" on the denuclearization goal and that Trump
"looks forward to meeting Chairman Kim again at their second summit at a place
and time yet to be determined."
The talks had stalled over North Korea's refusal to provide a detailed
accounting of its nuclear and missile facilities that would be used by
inspectors to verify any deal to dismantle them. The North has been demanding
that the U.S. lift harsh sanctions and provide it with security guarantees
before it takes any steps beyond its initial suspension of nuclear and missile
Kim Jong Un expressed frustration in an annual New Year's address over the
lack of progress in negotiations. But on a visit to Beijing last week, he said
North Korea would pursue a second summit "to achieve results that will be
welcomed by the international community," according to China's official Xinhua