Trump said to be 'actively preparing' for North Korea summit

Trump said to be 'actively preparing' for North Korea summit

Trump said to be 'actively preparing' for North Korea summit

A top aide to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un arrived in Singapore on Monday night, a Japanese broadcaster said on Tuesday, adding weight to indications the planned summit with Donald Trump is going ahead.

"A USA delegation is in ongoing talks with North Korean officials at Panmunjom", spokeswoman Heather Nauert said, referring to a village in the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ) that runs along the heavily armed border between North and South Korea.

"Meetings are now taking place concerning Summit, and more".

Multiple media agencies reported seeing Kim Yong Chol, a former military intelligence chief and current vice chairman of North Korea's ruling party, at the Beijing airport.

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Kim Yong Chol was spotted at Beijing's global airport Wednesday, where he's believed to be on a layover before boarding a flight to the United States that's due to arrive as early as Wednesday, according to South Korea's Yonhap News Agency and other media reports, citing unnamed sources.

"The United States continues to actively prepare for President Trump's expected summit with leader Kim in Singapore", it said in a statement. Kim Young Chol, the Vice Chairman of North Korea, heading now to NY.

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And, in Singapore, North Korean and USA delegates are coordinating logistics and protocol-related issues for the potential Trump-Kim talks, which may happen as previously scheduled June 12th. "He accompanied Kim Jong Un at recent summits with the leaders of China and South Korea, and represented Pyongyang at the closing ceremony of this year's Winter Olympics, sitting a few feet from Ivanka Trump".

On Sunday, the U.S. State Department said U.S. and North Korean officials had met at Panmunjom, a village in the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) that runs along the heavily armed border between North and South Korea.

Whatever Trump meant to suggest, the reference reflected two realities: first, that China will play a determinant role in the off-again, on-again diplomacy between the U.S. and North Korea over Pyongyang's nuclear program.

Kim Chang Son was in Beijing from Thursday to Saturday, according to Japanese and South Korean media reports, although it was not clear whether his trip was related to the summit preparations.

A spokesman at South Korea's presidential Blue House said he has no specific information about the ongoing talks in the DMZ and NY, but is hoping for good results.

Hayden said the best-case scenario for Trump at this point is to "stabilize the Korean problem, not solve it".

"The President and Prime Minister affirmed the shared imperative of achieving the complete and permanent dismantlement of North Korea's nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons and ballistic missile programs", the White House statement read. "We will to do everything we could for peace and stability of the Korean peninsula and humankind, and we, broad-minded and open all the time, have the willingness to offer the USA side time and opportunity", Kim Kye Gwam wrote.

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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.

Crossing the line that separates the two Koreas, Sung Kim met with Choe Son Hui, the North Korean vice foreign minister, who said last week that Pyongyang was "reconsidering" the talks.

He is widely believed to have masterminded the attack on a South Korean naval corvette, the Cheonan, in 2010, leading to the deaths of 46 sailors.

If the June 12 date stands, officials have only two weeks to finalize details such as where in Singapore the talks will take place and how internationally sanctioned North Korean officials will travel there.

Their second meeting came after inter-Korean relations had chilled in recent weeks, with North Korea canceling a high-level meeting with Seoul over South Korea's participation in a two-week military exercise with the United States that ended last week.

During that period North Korea ramped up its hacking programmes, including a hugely costly penetration of Sony Pictures. Then-US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright traveled to North Korea later that month. And the issue becomes - is he just going to stay in NY and meet with Secretary of State Pompeo?

The officials may discuss bridging the gap between the two sides on what a deal on the North's nuclear weapons would look like.

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