Published: Tue, June 26, 2018
Global | By Enrique Rogers

Seoul: North Korea artillery withdrawal being discussed 'internally'

Seoul: North Korea artillery withdrawal being discussed 'internally'

It is unclear if North Korea will also attempt to narrowly interpret the denuclearization agreement Kim made with U.S. President Donald Trump at the Singapore Summit this month.

But while both work to achieve the vague language of Kim's promise to "completely denuclearise the Korean peninsula", America's top USA diplomat refused to put a timeline on negotiations with North Korea contradicting a senior defence official who said Washington would soon present a timeline to North Korea with "specific asks".

In addition to toning down its anti-US rhetoric, North Korea has also reportedly transferred the remains of soldiers who died in the 1950-53 war to the border with South Korea. "We hope that we will have an ongoing process of making progress".

"There will be specific asks and there will be a specific timeline when we present the North Koreans with our concept of what implementation of the summit agreement looks like".

Singapore, an affluent financial hub, was seen as a good choice for the summit due to its warm ties with both the U.S. and North Korea, and reputation for strict order.

Mattis will also push for more regional security cooperation from China by pointing out that the suspension of USA military exercises with South Korea satisfies a major Chinese strategic objective, which is the real reason China has insisted so strongly on its "freeze-for-freeze" plan that made suspension of American exercises a precondition for nuclear talks with North Korea.

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"I think the way we are going to approach North Korea is we are going to have some data points pretty soon if they are operating in good faith or not", the official said.

Last year's event was held in Kim Il-sung Square with a reported 100,000 people attending.

On Monday, Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White walked those comments back in a pair of tweets.

During the summit, Kim reaffirmed a commitment toward complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula, while Trump said he would halt joint US-South Korean "war games."

CNN said Pompeo suggested it was too soon to expect a detailed roadmap after 40 years of tensions but insisted that Kim had been "unequivocal" about his willingness to denuclearize. Last week, Tokyo said it would suspend the drills for the time being after the Singapore summit. "I heard it myself when I visited there as Central Intelligence Agency director, I heard it myself when I visited Pyongyang as Secretary of State and I heard it again where there was a group together with the President and Chairman Kim".

Pompeo, who has been charged with leading negotiations aimed at persuading North Korea to give up a nuclear weapons program that threatens the U.S., said he would "constantly reassess" whether enough progress was being made to continue talks.

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