Monday, 10 December, 2018

Secretary Pompeo: We have great concerns about China's actions, disagreements

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo shakes hands with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Pyongyang REALDONALDTRUMP TWITTERUS Secretary of State Mike Pompeo shakes hands with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Pyongyang
Ellis Copeland | 08 October, 2018, 16:54

"We can't rule out the possibility that Washington. may move in the direction of partial easing of sanctions based on progress in denuclearisation", he said.

Pyongyang in May failed to follow through with its promises to allow inspectors to assess its demolition of Punggye-ri in what has become a roadblock in the country's denuclearization commitment which was reiterated in June after a meeting between Kim and US President Donald Trump in Singapore.

North Korea on Monday said it was ready to allow an global group of inspectors into the country's clandestine nuclear and missile sites, a move that could be seen as more evidence in Washington and Pyongyang's thawing relationship.

Since the denuclearization effort got underway with a secret visit to the North by then-CIA chief Pompeo in April, there has been only limited progress, even since the June 12 Trump-Kim summit that many had hoped would jump-start the effort.

The two countries have, however, been in a standoff over what the term denuclearisation means.

Pompeo and Kim made "significant progress" in "a long process" to denuclearize North Korea and "will continue to make significant progress and we are further along in making that progress than any administration in an awfully long time", he said.

Also on Monday, South Korean President Moon Jae-in said he expects Kim to travel to Russian Federation and for Chinese President Xi Jinping to visit North Korea soon amid a global diplomatic push to resolve the nuclear crisis.

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KCNA said: "Together with Mike Pompeo, Kim Jong-un appreciated the positively developing situation on the Korean peninsula, explained in detail the proposals for solving the denuclearisation issue and matter of concern of both sides and exchanged constructive opinions". Thank you for hosting, President Trump sends his regards.

Pompeo met Wang and Yang Jiechi, a senior Cabinet official and former foreign minister, after talks Sunday with Kim in North Korea's capital, Pyongyang. Pompeo didn't meet with Kim on that trip.

Mr Pompeo and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un held talks over the weekend.

North Korea has called on the United States to actively engage in talks on declaring an end to the Korean War, which was halted in 1953 with an armistice, not a peace treaty.

It was Pompeo's fourth trip to Pyongyang and his first visit since July, when he spent the night and left with little to show for his journey. It came amid expectations that his meeting with leader Kim could provide momentum to get the denuclearization process going again after a monthslong stalemate over how to rid the North of its nuclear weapons program.

A stalemate followed with the two countries struggling to agree over the exact terms of the vaguely worded deal secured in Singapore, with the United States calling for a "final, fully verified denuclearisation" of North Korea, while Pyongyang says more trust is needed. Trump said it resulted in a "special bond" between the two leaders and he was optimistic about a denuclearized future.

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