Tuesday, 16 October, 2018

Pompeo says North Korea to let inspectors visit weapons sites

4c554428 NK leader expresses belief in 'good program' for 2nd summit with Trump
Faye Gross | 08 October, 2018, 14:45

North Korea so far has suspended nuclear and missile tests, freed three American prisoners and dismantled parts of a missile engine facility and tunnel entrances at a nuclear test site.

"There's a lot of logistics that will be required to execute that", Mr Pompeo told a news briefing in Seoul before leaving for Beijing.

North Korean state news agency KCNA described Sunday's talks between Kim and Pompeo as "productive and wonderful", adding that the two sides' stances were "fully understood and opinions exchanged".

Pompeo and Kim also discussed "denuclearisation steps that will be taken by North Korea and the issue of attendance by the USA government", as well as "corresponding measures" to be taken by the United States, the statement said.

Neither Pompeo nor North Korea offered details.

"Kim Jong Un appreciated the positively developing situation on the Korean peninsula". But Trump called off the trip a day later, saying North Korea hadn't made sufficient progress toward denuclearization.

According to notes from Mr Pompeo's early Sunday visit to Pyongyang - the secretary's fourth - Mr Pompeo and Kim emerged from their meeting and had lunch together before Mr Pompeo left for South Korea.

The US is pushing for a "final, fully verified denuclearisation" but North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho told the United Nations general assembly in September there was "no way" his country would disarm first as long as tough US sanctions remained against his country.

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Mr Trump cancelled Mr Pompeo's planned trip to Pyongyang in August, citing little evidence that North Korea had followed through on any of its commitments to denuclearise. Thank you for hosting, President Trump sends his regards. Mr Pompeo did not meet Mr Kim on that trip.

An official on Sunday's latest visit to Pyongyang with Pompeo said the trip was "better than the last time", but added: "It's going to be a long haul". Japan has been wary of the initiative, but South Korea has embraced it.

North Korea is ready to allow global inspectors into its nuclear and missile sites.

"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.

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi shows the way to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo before a meeting at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, China October 8, 2018.

South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha has given a hint of what a grand bargain between the two countries could look like. "I thought we had a good, productive conversation, and as President Trump has said, there are many steps along the way, and we took one of them today, another step forward".

In recent weeks, US officials have pointed to a recent meeting in Pyongyang between Kim and Moon, when North Korea committed to dismantling a missile-engine-testing site and raised the possibility of doing the same at its Yongbyon nuclear-enrichment facility.

The US is hoping to get China to support its plan for North Korea's nuclear disarmament. Last week, Vice President Mike Pence stepped up the US pressure campaign against Beijing, going beyond the trade war by accusing China of both "malign" efforts to undermine President Donald Trump ahead of next month's congressional elections and of reckless military action in the South China Sea.

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