Donald Trump to meet Kim again in February end, venue not known yet
In May, North Korea released three American detainees and sent them home with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo after his meeting with the North Korean leader in PyongyangUpdated: Jan 19, 2019 18:59 IST
US president Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will hold their second meeting at the end of February, the White House announced Friday, in a development that will be expected to move talks that have shown little progress since the first and historic summit in Singapore last summer.
The announcements came after a 90-minuted meeting between President Trump and secretary of state Mike Pompeo met and Kim Yong Chol, North Korea’s top nuclear negotiator and Vice Chairman of the Workers Party of Korea and Chairman of the Korea Asia Pacific Peace Committee, at the White House.
Sarah Sanders, the White House press secretary, said in a statement discussion were focussed on “denuclearization and a second summit, which will take place near the end of February”. The venue will be announced later. Danang in Vietnam was among some names speculated about in reports.
“We’ve continued to make progress,” Sanders told reporters later, adding, the United States will continue to “keep pressure and sanctions on North Korea until we see fully and verified denuclearization”.
After the hype and promise of the Singapore summit, negotiations have not shown demonstrable progress despite President Trump’s repeated claims that North Korea is less of a threat today. A missile defense review unveiled he unveiled on Thursday said that despite the talks North Korean “continues to pose an extraordinary threat and the United States must remain vigilant”.
The North Korean negotiator was meeting the US president for the second time; at their first, he had delivered an outsized envelope containing a letter from Chairman Kim, as was seen in pictures they posed for after their meeting. This time, there were no photo-ops or press interactions.
Talks have floundered over US demand for a list of North Korean sites associated with its nuclear and ballistic missiles programmes, which Pyongyang has found problematic to hand over. And the Trump administration has come under attack thus from critics to have been played by Kim.
But allies of the president welcomed the announcement of a second summit for now. “Great news that there will be a second summit with President @realDonaldTrump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un,” wrote Lindsey Graham, Republican senator who heads the Senate judiciary committee, on Twitter.
“President Trump deserves great credit for getting us to this point,” he added.
First Published: Jan 19, 2019 08:33 IST