US, North Korea ‘high-level’ talk expected soon for Trump-Kim next summit: South Korea

U. S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with North Korea leader Kim Jong Un at the Capella resort on Sentosa Island Tuesday, June 12, 2018 in Singapore. (Kevin Lim/The Straits Times via AP)

North Korea and the United States was planning to hold high-level talks, probably this week, in Washington, to discuss both leaders second summit, following nuclear talks, according to South Korean media reports on Tuesday.

According to Reuters news reports, the South media said the meeting would be expected to take place on Thursday or Friday, led by the US secretary of state Mike Pompeo and senior North Korean official Kim Yong Chol.

The newspaper said both countries are expected to finalize location and dates of their second summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un and the United States President Donald Trump, and the North Korean envoy is expected to meet Trump.

The South Korean Yonhap news agency reported that Kim Yong Chol and Pompeo could meet up this week.

A CNN reported, in a tweet, wrote that the North’s envoy could visit the US “as soon as this week” but the plans have not yet been finalized.

The CNN reporter added that ahead of expected possible meetings, Trump’s letter to the North’s president was flown to Pyongyang and was delivered over the weekend.

However, the US embassy in South’s Seoul did not make any immediate comment over the reports, while the White House offered “we don’t have any meetings to announce” over South Korean newspaper reports.

A senior South Korean official said: “Those ideas are being discussed as interim measures, not as an end state, in order to expedite the denuclearization process because the North wouldn’t respond to any demand for a declaration of facilities and weapons.”

It added: “The end goal remains unchanged, whether it be complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization, or final, fully verified denuclearization.”

The official said Trump-Kim second summit could happen in late February or early March, however, “no one knows what Trump is thinking”.

A senior fellow at South Korea’s Sejong Institute, Cheong Seong-chang said: “At the second summit, they’ll probably focus on reaching a possible interim deal, rather than a comprehensive roadmap for denuclearization.”

He added: “Whether Pyongyang is willing to abolish ICBMs, in addition to disabling the Yongbyon complex, would be key, and if so, the North will likely demand sanctions relief in return.”

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