White House Unhappy With Pompeo-North Korea Visit

Pauline Gross
July 12, 2018

Pompeo made his first overnight visit to Pyongyang last week to discuss a specific definition for denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, which for America would require the complete elimination of the North Korean nuclear program.

"We were ready", the official said.

Pompeo insisted the talks were making progress but as soon as he left, the North's foreign ministry berated him over his "unilateral and gangster-like" demands and for offering no constructive steps on the United States side.

Although KCNA did not say when the trip was made, Kim Yong Chol told a visiting Seoul official last week that the leader was away for a trip to a "local region".

South Korea approved a rare screening of North Korean movies at a local film festival on Tuesday, as a diplomatic thaw gains pace following two landmark summits between their leaders.

"Kim referred to his meeting with Trump last month in positive terms, calling it "the start of a meaningful journey".

The agency has built up a DNA database from relatives that covers 92 per cent of the Korean War missing, versus 85 per cent for the Vietnam War and about 5 per cent for World War II.

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An estimated 30,000 USA soldiers died in the 1950-53 Korean war.

The letter made no mention of North Korea's plans to denuclearize. The Pentagon confirmed this following President Trump's declaration at a speech that week that "we got back our great fallen heroes, the remains sent back today, already 200 got sent back".

USA officials and experts have said the shift in attitude was to be expected as the North Koreans are known for brinkmanship and trying to up the ante ahead of tough negotiations over their nuclear missile program. The transfer of remains between North Korea and the United States has not taken place since 2005.

Byrd, a forensic anthropologist, was part of a 15-strong DPAA team in North Korea 20 years ago.

Foreign ministry spokesman Noh Kyu-duk said, "The government hopes the agreements reached between leaders at the North Korea-U.S. summit, including the repatriation of Korean War remains, will be swiftly carried out as a means to fulfill the goal of complete denuclearization and establishment of a peace system on the Korean Peninsula".

North Korea proposed to reschedule the meeting for Sunday.

There is speculation that North Korea may also want payment for the return of the remains, our correspondent adds.

Other reports by GizPress

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