Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un to meet for second summit

Clay Curtis
Января 21, 2019

South Korea's top nuclear envoy, Lee Do-hoon, also arrived in Sweden on Friday for possible three-way negotiations with them as a potential mediator in denuclearization talks.

But the North sees denuclearisation more broadly, seeking an end to the sanctions and what it sees as USA threats against it - sometimes referencing Washington's military deployments in the wider region, such as Japan and Guam.

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said Trump met for 90 minutes with Kim Yong Chol to discuss denuclearization and a second summit.

The announcement came amid a diplomatic flurry in Washington surrounding the visit of Kim Yong Chol, a hardline former spy chief, and marked a sign of movement in a denuclearisation effort that has stalled since a landmark meeting between Trump and the North Korean leader in Singapore on June 12.

It is thought that Mr Yong-chol was visiting Washington to deliver a letter to Mr Trump from the North Korean leader.

So far, no details have been publicly released about how denuclearisation could occur.

At the United Nations on Friday, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres encouraged both countries to continue talks.

US President Donald Trump said Saturday that the location has been decided for his next summit with North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un, around the end of February.

Washington has repeatedly said it expects the North to give up its nuclear arsenal, doggedly developed over decades by the Kim dynasty, at a vast cost in resources and isolation, and multiple sets of worldwide sanctions.

US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will meet near the end of February for a second summit, despite evidence North Korea is advancing its nuclear weapons programme.

Trump also said progress was being made toward a trade deal with North Korea's main backer, China, but denied he was considering lifting tariffs on Chinese products.

The meetings in Washington could finalise plans for the summit, but just as important, analysts say, would be an understanding of what the agenda would be.

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A year ago in Singapore, Trump had described his first-ever historic meeting with Kim Jong-un as "really fantastic" and said they had agreed to "sign" an unspecified document after their "very positive" summit, aimed at normalising ties and complete denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula.

Kim arrived in the USA capital Thursday evening and is expected to return to Pyongyang via Beijing on Saturday.

Some senior Democrats said that if the report is true, Mr Trump's actions could lead to impeachment.

Satellite-imagery analysis and leaked American intelligence suggest North Korea has churned out rockets and warheads as quickly as ever in the year since Kim halted weapons tests and paved the way for his first meeting with Trump.

President Donald Trump has spoken several times of having a second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un early this year.

"I worry that the timing works to North Korea's benefit", Cha said, citing pressures on Trump such as the partial USA government shutdown and the ongoing investigation into alleged Russian ties to Trump's 2016 presidential campaign.

After the meeting at the White House, the North Korean envoy was invited to lunch at the State Department by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

The last time Kim Yong-chol and Pompeo were scheduled to meet, in NY in November, the State Department abruptly announced the meeting's postponement at a day's notice, reportedly at the North's request.

"Either bilateral or multilateral meetings can be held if all the three officials are present there", the source said.

"The North Koreans need a real indication of what the United States is willing to put on the table", said Jenny Town, a North Korea expert at 38 North, a Washington-based think tank.

DIMAGGIO: If the USA goes into the second summit with a more realistic, phased approach, perhaps including some early sanctions exemptions and a peace declaration, which are the two priorities for the North Koreans, then we may see some progress.

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