The point person for USA preparations, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, met with Kim Yong Chol, a top adviser to Kim Jong Un and vice chairman of the Central Committee Wednesday.
Japan is reportedly seeking foreign ministers talks with North Korea amid working-level talks between Washington and Pyongyang ahead of their potential summit. The two officials had discussions over dinner on Wednesday.
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In anticipation of the meeting, North Korea earlier this month freed three American prisoners and on May 24 appeared to blow up tunnels and other buildings at its Punggye-ri nuclear test site in the mountainous northeastern part of the country where the regime has conducted six underground tests since 2006.
Mr Trump called off the meeting with Mr Kim, set to take place in Singapore on June 12, because he believed it could not take place amid the "the tremendous anger and open hostility displayed" by North Korea in its "most recent statement" where North Korea spoke about its nuclear capabilities. "It was the first official meeting with him face to face", TASS quoted a source in the minister's delegation as saying. "However, we can build a technically ideal modern facility if we want to in the future".
"We are aware of the media reports".
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Activist Kim Young-hwan speaks at a symposium on North Korean human rights in Seoul on May 31, 2018. It was not immediately clear who accompanied Kim Yong Chol on the North Korean side. Until recently, the North has viewed South Korea and the U.S.as its adversaries.
Trump cautioned that while he hopes a planned summit in Singapore on June 12 between the US and North Korea is still in the cards, he wants it to be a "meaningful" meeting.
After a year of major advancements in the North Korean nuclear weapons program that led to high tensions between Pyongyang, Washington and much of the world that led to a surge in aggressive sanctions, its leader has sued for some peace. Translated by Leejin Jun.
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Reported by Myungchul Lee for RFA's Korean Service. Written in English by Roseanne Gerin.