Published: Tue, May 29, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

U.S. diplomats battle to save Kim peace summit

U.S. diplomats battle to save Kim peace summit

On Sunday, Trump confirmed that officials from the two countries were meeting in the Korean Demilitarized Zone.

Trump's team believes the "maximum pressure" campaign to strangle North Korea's economy is working, and Kim's regime will have to come to the table eventually, according to a person familiar with the administration's thinking.

The on-and-off-again Singapore summit between Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un is just a few weeks away.

A delegation of United States envoys met with North Korean officials Sunday in Panmunjom to work out details of the summit.

Trump's optimism that the June 12 summit in Singapore will still happen does not mean that it will, however, and even if all sides agreed to whatever it is they need to agree to, there might not be enough time left to get ready.

A White House statement said that in their call, Trump and Abe "affirmed the shared imperative of achieving the complete and permanent dismantlement of North Korea's nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons and ballistic missile programs".

Within 24 hours, the United States president reversed his decision and said that the summit could still go ahead after productive talks were held with North Korean officials.

Now, according to a statement from State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert on Sunday, a US delegation "is in ongoing talks with North Korean officials at Panmunjom", too.

"However, during the US-South Korea summit, President Trump clearly emphasised that we may see not only the end of hostile relations but also economic cooperation if North Korea denuclearises", Moon said.

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Among those in North Korea on behalf of the US was Sung Kim, the veteran diplomat and current USA ambassador to the Philippines.

What was uncertain to Mr Kim was USA intentions, said Mr Moon.

Still Trump tweeted that he believes the summit can move forward, and Kim, through the state-run news service, expressed a "fixed will" on the talks happening. "And we'll be here satirizing the whole situation", said Howard.

Moon said Monday there could be more impromptu talks between the two Koreas in the lead-up to the summit.

Moon said North Korea was not convinced it could trust security guarantees from the United States. Mr. Moon said Sunday that the North's disarmament could be still be a hard process even if Pyongyang, Washington and Seoul don't differ over what "complete denuclearization" of the peninsula means.

With the landmark US-North Korea summit moving along "very nicely" according to US President Donald Trump, Singaporeans were surprised to see Kim Jong Un gamely posing for pictures in the heart of Marina Bay yesterday, armed with a durian and a box of chicken rice. "King Jong Un knows his program inside and out", Hayden said. The U.S. delegation reportedly included Sung Kim, U.S. ambassador to the Philippines and a former U.S. special representative for North Korea policy.

The Heritage Foundation's Bruce Klingner, a former Central Intelligence Agency analyst on the Koreas, tells NPR's Elise Hu that the US and North Korea still are not aligned on a definition of denuclearization.

The president made the comments in a tweet on Sunday as U.S. officials arrived in North Korea and met their counterparts at the border village of Panmunjom. "But he wants to give off this perception that he's this open leader, that he's peaceful, that he's reasonable", Mr. Rubio said on ABC's "This Week".

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