Global News

US Officials Say North Korea Is Willing To Talk About Denuclearization

US Officials Say North Korea Is Willing To Talk About Denuclearization

US President Donald Trump told reporters on Monday that he will meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un either next month or in early June.

But Pyongyang has been silent publicly since then about a summit, even as Kim visited Beijing last month in his first visit outside North Korea since assuming control of the country after his father, Kim Jong Il, died in 2011.

The US State Department has been in contact with the North Korean UN mission, while the intelligence services of both countries have been conducting parallel talks.

Ahead of the North's upcoming summits with South Korea and the United States, North Korean diplomat Ri Yong-ho is expected to hold talks with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Russia on Tuesday.

Hearing that the US has confirmed Kim's willingness to discuss "denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula", however, is far from a surprise.

North Korea has expressed its readiness to address the issue, which Kim himself said during his meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing in March, "can be resolved if South Korea and the U.S. respond to our efforts with goodwill" and "take progressive and synchronized steps towards its achievement". "But it would have been a lot easier if it were done five years ago, 10 years ago, 20 years ago", he said.

For decades, North Korea has dangled the prospect of "denuclearization" - freezing its nuclear weapons programs - but only if the United States withdraws its forces from South Korea.

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The North Korean dictator held a meeting with his party on Monday where he discussed with his most trusted advisors what the potential outcome would be from talking to the USA and the South.

Premier Pak Pong Ju, member of the Presidium of the Politburo, also delivered a report on the execution of the 2017 state budget, KCNA reported.

Washington (U.S.A.): On Sunday, the administration of US President Donal Trump said that North Korea and the U.S.A. will soon discuss on denuclearisation. Prior to that, Washington had relied mostly on South Korea's assurances of Kim's intentions.

Should all go well with Pompeo's confirmation, he should be in place by the time of a prospective summit meeting between Trump and Kim.

"Kim Jong Un has been shifting from the military-dominated emergency system to a normal party-dominant system", said Professor Yang Moo-jin at the University of North Korean Studies.

It is scheduled to take place without the months of groundwork that usually precedes such meetings. The Mongolian capital Ulaanbaatar has also been raised as a possible location, the sources said.


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