North Korea Issues Directives to Prevent Unrest Over Uncertainty About US Summit

31 May, 2018, 21:04 | Author: Bert Pena
  • Russia says Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to visit N.Korea on May 31

That was a shift from last week, when Trump announced in an open letter to Kim Jong Un that he had made a decision to "terminate" the summit following a provocative statement from the North. Shortly afterward, however, the U.S. president said that he was still open to the meeting with the North Korean leader.

Discussion on "solving the Korean Peninsula's nuclear problem" must involve the lifting of sanctions on North Korea, Lavrov told his North Korean counterpart Ri Yong Ho before the meeting with Kim, state-run Tass news service reported.

Trump had been scheduled to meet Kim in Singapore on June 12, but the meeting was thrown into doubt after the United States leader said he was cancelling it.

Commenting the meeting on Twitter, Mr Pompeo said: "Good working dinner with Kim Yong Chol in NY tonight".

On Wednesday, Kim Yong Chol, the vice chairman of the ruling North Korean Workers' Party's Central Committee, arrived in NY to hold talks with Pompeo as part of preparations for the US-North Korean summit in Singapore.

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The directives will raise eyebrows among North Koreans who now will not know what to believe about recent developments, despite some signs of enthusiasm about détente with South Korea and the USA, said a source from North Pyongan province who declined to be named. Trump's open letter to Kim last week cancelling the summit, the aides said, was created to pressure the North on the worldwide stage for appearing to have cold feet.

White House officials maintain that Trump was hopeful the North was merely negotiating but that he was prepared for the letter to mark the end of the two-month flirtation.

Japan is reportedly seeking foreign ministers talks with North Korea amid working-level talks between Washington and Pyongyang ahead of their potential summit.

While the Central Committee's statement served to cushion possible "psychological unrest" among citizens, it also included phrasing to indicate that the North has not abandoned its nuclear power ambitions, the source said. The last official of his stature to visit the United States was Jo Myong Rok, the late first vice chairman of the National Defence Commission, who visited Washington in 2000, South Korea's Unification Ministry said.

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