Pompeo wines and dines North Korean negotiator in New York

May 31, 2018, 19:18
Pompeo wines and dines North Korean negotiator in New York

In New York, Kim Yong-chol and Pompeo are expected to push for a deal that will satisfy US demands for complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization (CVID) and North Korean demands for CVIG, where G stands for security guarantees for the regime.

In anticipation of the meeting, North Korea earlier this month freed three American prisoners and on May 24 appeared to blow up tunnels and other buildings at its Punggye-ri nuclear test site in the mountainous northeastern part of the country where the regime has conducted six underground tests since 2006.

Early Tuesday the president tweeted that he had received a "solid response" from representatives of North Korea following his letter cancelling the June summit. Japanese media have also quoted government officials as saying Abe could visit Washington for talks with Trump before the G7 meeting. North Korean and U.S. officials have been spotted at hotels in Singapore, where the two leaders had been planning to meet.

But Kim, in a meeting with Russia's foreign minister on Thursday, complained about "U.S. hegemonism", a comment that may complicate the discussions in NY.

Senior North Korean official Kim Yong Chol and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have had a "good" meeting in NY. "That is how you do these things". 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.

"For North Korea, Russia is less important compared to South Korea, the United States and China", Andrei Lankov, a professor of Korean Studies at Kookmin University in Seoul, told Al Jazeera.

Pyongyang's state-run KCNA news agency said Kim "expressed his fixed will" to meet Trump, adding South and North Korea would hold another round of "high-level" talks on June 1.

While the Central Committee's statement served to cushion possible "psychological unrest" among citizens, it also included phrasing to indicate that the North has not abandoned its nuclear power ambitions, the source said.

Immediately after touching down, Mr Lavrov called for the phased lifting of sanctions on North Korea, suggesting that Pyongyang would not give up its nuclear weapons until the sanctions were scaled back.

In further diplomatic moves ahead of the proposed summit, Russian Federation announced that Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov would visit North Korea on Thursday.

North Korea's leader Kim - meeting a top Russian official for the first time - thanked Moscow for standing by Pyongyang as the country tries to come in from the diplomatic cold.

"I think it's a pretty big deal and to me this raises whatever the estimates were of the summit actually occurring", she told CNN. In October 2000, the head of the North Korean military, Vice Marshal Cho Myong Rok, brought an invitation to Washington for President Bill Clinton to visit Pyongyang to pursue talks on North Korea's nuclear and missile programs.

"Since the president's May 24 letter to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the North Koreans have been engaging", Sanders said.

Disputes between Washington and Pyongyang led Trump to announce last Thursday he was canceling the meeting with Kim due to take place in Singapore, only to say the following day that it could still go ahead.

Dr Hecker noted that the decontamination and decommissioning of a single plant that handles radioactive materials could take a decade or more.

"I can say that we have just entered the gate of denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula", said Cho, a top adviser to President Moon Jae-in who has been engaged with North Korean officials in talks at Panmunjom truce village in the Demilitarized Zone.

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