Trump says Kim ‘sees different future’ for North Korea

Pauline Gross
July 6, 2018

He is accompanied by Sung Kim, the US ambassador to the Philippines and seasoned nuclear negotiator, Allison Hooker, a National Security Council adviser, Randall Schriver, an assistant secretary of defense for Asia Pacific security affairs, and Andrew Kim, the head of the CIA's Korea Mission Center. The U.S. State Department furtively shifted its insistence on a complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization (CVID) to a finally, fully-verified denuclearization (FFVD) after the North bristled against the former approach.

Whatever U.S. concessions and rewards North Korea gets, however, some experts say North Korea will likely push to scrap only some of its nuclear capability, not all.

Pompeo arrives in Pyongyang on Friday for a two-day visit.

A peace treaty between the USA and North Korea would end the 1953 Armistice Agreement, which would strengthen North Korea's argument for American troop withdrawal, Asahi Shimbun said. Missile engine test sites, including the one at the North's Dongchangni missile center, also appear to be operating normally, Kim said.

President Donald Trump met Kim at a historic summit in Singapore last month and the USA leader has been bullish about hopes for peace, boasting that the threat of nuclear war is over.

The US secretary of state will present Kim with the CD along with a letter from Trump, who memorably turned the song's title into an epithet after the North stepped up its ballistic missile tests a year ago.

Kim also said the North is showing signs of building a new submarine capable of firing ballistic missiles at its Sinpo shipyard on the east coast.

"The President told me he believes that Chairman Kim sees a different, brighter future for the people of North Korea". Pompeo hopes to press North Korea to work toward a timetable to end its nuclear program and lay out details of how verification of that can be carried out.

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Players of Team Peace and Team Prosperity enter the stadium during an inter-Korean women's basketball match in Pyongyang, North Korea.

On Thursday, the State Department denied any change in Washington's negotiating position.

Basketball diplomacy has something of a history in North Korea.

Last month, Trump told a crowd of supporters that 200 human remains had already "been sent back", but USA military officials later said that was not the case. After an overnight trip to North Korea, Pompeo also is expected to travel to Japan, Vietnam, the United Arab Emirates, and Belgium for next week's NATO Summit next week. Team Prosperity defeated Team Peace 103-102, with North Korea's Ro Suk Yong scoring 18 points, according to pool reports.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, a noted basketball fan, didn't appear at the gymnasium on Wednesday.

North Korea's sports minister, Kim Il Guk, said in a speech that the games reflect the "revered determination of the leaders of the North and South to bring forward the future of a self-reliant unification".

Go Myong-Hyun of the Seoul-based Asan Institute for Policy Studies said the United States may focus on demanding the dismantling of missiles, whose size makes them harder to hide than warheads and nuclear materials.

Other reports by GizPress

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