Kim's Letter to Trump Expresses Interest in Nuclear Summit

Adjust Comment Print

After arriving at the White House on Friday afternoon, the North Korean official was seen being ushered into the West Wing by the president's chief of staff, John Kelly. They walked along the Rose Garden to the Oval Office, where Kim was expected to hand over the letter from his leader.

The administration is arguing that if the North Koreans want security, it can not come from nuclear weapons.

The contents of the letter were not immediately known.

Pompeo spoke after meeting with Kim Yong-chol for a little more than two hours at the residence of the deputy US ambassador to the United Nations.

Their job, Pompeo said, was putting Trump and Kim "in a place where we think there could be real progress made by the two of them meeting".

Early Thursday, Trump told reporters "we are doing very well" with North Korea. The agency quoted Kim as saying that the North's willingness for the "denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula still remains unchanged" but also that the process should be "stage-by-stage basis by founding a solution to meet the interests of each other".

He vowed Russia's support for denuclearization and a broader effort to create a stable and long-lasting peace in the region, but indicated that Moscow believes sanctions can be eased while the process is in progress, which diverges from the US position that denuclearization must come first. Pompeo also appeared to lower expectations of what might come out of a summit, after a NY meeting with Kim.

US President Donald Trump is prepared to walk away from peace talks with North Korea at any time, a former military leader has warned, insisting that a peaceful solution to the North Korea nuclear issue is not certain.

"It will take bold leadership from Chairman Kim Jong Un if we were able to seize this once in a lifetime opportunity to change the course for the world", he said.

Pompeo spoke after meeting with Kim Yong Chol for a little more than two hours at the residence of the deputy USA ambassador to the United Nations.

The secretary was scheduled to hold a press conference at the Lotte New York Palace Hotel in midtown Manhattan on Thursday afternoon, at 2:15 p.m., according to the State Department. The two men, each accompanied by an aide, dined together on American beef at the 39th-floor condo Wednesday night in what was their third encounter.

Pompeo said they finished everything they needed to address in the morning session. He and Pompeo had discussions over dinner of steak, corn and cheese on Wednesday (Thursday NZT), Pompeo said in a tweet.

The former spy chief's current official position is vice-chairman of the Central Committee of the Worker's Party of Korea, but he rose to prominence as Pyongyang's chief military negotiator during inter-Korean talks between 2006-08.

"Our secretary of state is having very good meetings".

"We also have reports back from the DMZ", spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said. "It is very important to them". "Hopefully we will have a meeting on the 12th".

Kim told Lavrov he hopes to boost cooperation with Russian Federation.

Washington wants North Korea to quickly give up all its nuclear weapons in a verifiable way in return for sanctions and economic relief. But there are lingering doubts on whether Mr. Kim will ever fully relinquish his nuclear arsenal, which he may see as his only guarantee of survival in a region surrounded by enemies. But Trump canceled last week, over what he called Kim's "tremendous anger and open hostility" in a string of public statements. However, these negotiations ultimately failed.

The official said it would be "perfectly natural", if a letter for Trump would be handed to Secretary of State Pompeo, Kim Yong-chol's "counterpart in the preparation for the summit", but did not completely rule out the possibility that Kim may physically deliver it to Trump himself.

Comments