Trump to meet Abe before 'expected' Kim summit

Kim Jong-un committed to complete denuclearisation, says Moon Jae-in after North-South 'surprise' summit

In Singapore, a separate team led by White House deputy chief of staff Joe Hagin met Tuesday with a North Korean delegation led by Kim Chang-son, a senior official at the State Affairs Commission, to arrange the logistics, sources said.

The call came amid a whirlwind of activity over the possible June 12 summit in Singapore.

Kim is as enthusiastic as Trump to see the summit happen as soon as possible, but the claim that his sudden switch to diplomacy over the past several months shows he is aching for USA economic aid and private-sector know-how presents a major problem for the North Korean leader, who can't be seen as going into the summit with his hat in his hand.

Trump had mused that Kim's "attitude" had changed after the North Korean leader's surprise visit to China two weeks ago, suggesting China was pushing Kim away from the table.

Since Kim is spending a day in Beijing before flying to NY, it is likely that he will also have reached some consensus with China before entering talks with US officials.

"We have put a great team together for our talks with North Korea", Trump said in a Twitter post.

A senior North Korean official and the top USA diplomat had dinner in NY on Wednesday as President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un try to salvage prospects for a high-stakes nuclear summit.

U.S. negotiators, headed by Washington's current ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim, met with North Korean counterparts in the truce village of Panmunjom that divides the two Koreas on Sunday.

North Korea's flurry of diplomatic activity following a torrid run in nuclear weapons and missile tests in 2017 suggests that Kim Jong Un is eager for sanctions relief to build his economy and the global legitimacy the summit with Trump would provide.

Their talks will be aimed at determining whether a meeting between Trump and Kim Jong Un, originally scheduled for June 12 but later canceled by Trump, can be restored, USA officials have said.

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Kim believes the summit with Trump will be an opportunity to end decades of confrontation, Moon said.

Trump tweeted earlier that the senior North Korean official was en route to the USA, calling the visit a "solid response to my letter".

Trump has confirmed that a top North Korean official, Kim Yong Chol, is headed to NY for talks with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

At their first meeting on April 27, Kim Jong Un and Moon announced vague aspirations for a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula and permanent peace, which Seoul has tried to sell as a meaningful breakthrough that increases the chances of successful talks between Kim and Trump.

Since the 1970s, the United States and South Korea have been holding a major summertime exercise called Ulchi Freedom Guardian that involves tens of thousands of troops.

"We are having very productive talks with North Korea about reinstating the Summit which, if it does happen, will likely remain in Singapore on the same date, June 12th., and, if necessary, will be extended beyond that date", Trump tweeted Friday.

South Korea's Defence Ministry said it did not have plans to change exercise schedules with the USA military. The United States stations 28,500 troops in South Korea, a legacy of the 1950-53 Korean War. He was linked by U.S intelligence to a cyber attack on Sony Pictures in 2014.

North Korea's message on that has been clear.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and may not reflect those of Kitco Metals Inc. This article is strictly for informational purposes only. Kitco Metals Inc. and the author of this article do not accept culpability for losses and/ or damages arising from the use of this publication.

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