Published: Sun, May 13, 2018
Global | By Enrique Rogers

Trump thanks Singapore for hosting Kim summit in call

Trump thanks Singapore for hosting Kim summit in call

In regards to sanctions on North Korea, Kang said that they would "remain in place until, and unless, we see visible, meaningful action taken by North Korea on the denuclearization track".

For Pompeo, his visit to retrieve the trio was his second surprise trip to North Korea in recent weeks, having traveled there to visit the country's leader in early April while he was Central Intelligence Agency director - and before his confirmation as secretary of state.

Trump made the announcement after welcoming three Americans freed from prison in North Korea as they arrived back in the United States with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

Trump and Kim will meet June 12 in Singapore.

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In a joint news conference with South Korea's top diplomat, he offered a glimpse of what US-North Korean relations could look like if they succeed in reaching a nuclear accord.

"As a neutral, and objective country with much-admired consistent foreign policy principles and a small state with no desire or capacity to harm other states and their interests, Singapore fits that bill well", said Lim Tai Wei, adjunct research fellow at the National University of Singapore's East Asia Institute.

"If Chairman Kim chooses the right path, there is a future brimming with peace and prosperity" for North Korea and its people, Pompeo said.

The United States and North Korea are technically still at war-a stop-gap armistice ended the brutal three-year Korean war in 1953 and around 30,000 American troops remain in neighboring South Korea, which the USA supported in the conflict.

Then, in 2013, North Korea said it would restart operations at the Yongbyon site - a move that was later confirmed by experts.

But there is some question about the sequencing. However, a final attempt by Bush to complete an agreement to fully dismantle North Korea's nuclear weapons program collapsed that December when the North refused to accept USA -proposed verification methods.

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Pompeo met with the North Korean leader for 90 minutes, flashing a fingers-crossed sign to reporters when asked about the detainees' fate, according to The Associated Press.

While Kang sought to assure reporters that the USA and South Korea are unified on the matter, she was slightly more moderate on the possibility of relief, saying sanctions must remain in place "until we see visible, meaningful action taken by North Korea on the denuclearization track".

With the final details in place, the meeting will become the first ever meeting between a sitting US president and North Korean leader.

China has welcomed the upcoming summit of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and U.S. leaders in Singapore on June 12, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Geng Shuang said on Friday.

Can Trump and Kim strike a deal to halt North Korea's nuclear aggression? Trump is also likely to try and convince the reclusive leader to shut down the nation's nuclear programme.

He said he had had good conversations with Kim, who he found to be a focused and rational interlocutor. A key part of North Korean propaganda is that the US invaded the country at the start of the Korean War in 1950 - one reason the country needs nuclear weapons, to fend off that American aggression.

An example of a country that accepted USA economic help is Japan after World War II, which was able to recover after losing the war.

During his visit, Pompeo discussed the agenda for a potential Trump-Kim Jong Un summit. "For decades, we have been adversaries". "We hope this meeting will advance prospects for peace in the Korean Peninsula", the Agence France-Presse quoted Singapore's Ministry of Foreign Affairs as saying Thursday, May 10.

Critics blast the "warm" words and smiles, while supporters say it is part of diplomacy.

Since the foundation of North Korea in 1948, the country has endured war and struggled to balance rival Soviet and Chinese spheres of influence.

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