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Pompeo 'hopeful' North Korea talks can continue

16 March 2019
Pompeo 'hopeful' North Korea talks can continue

The U.S. has said since then that it will only accept its definition of "complete denuclearization" - the total dismantlement of North Korea's weapons of mass destruction program.

Between Feb. 16 and March 2, the Washington-based 38 North, a North Korea project of the Henry L. Stimson Center, detected structures on the launch pad at the Tongchang-ri launch site, also known as Sohae, had been rebuilt, although now it appeared activity had ceased. But later, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Advisor John Bolton interfered, demanding full denuclearization before any sanctions would be lifted, which the North Koreans found "an absurd sophism".

The summit ended abruptly without a joint agreement after Kim insisted that all United States sanctions on his country be lifted.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton on Friday denied that they derailed talks between President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un two weeks ago in Vietnam after a fiery statement from North Korea accused the two men of creating a environment of hostility. The North Korean leader will now decide whether he would agree to more talks with Donald Trump and whether to maintain the moratorium on tests, the diplomat said.

Pompeo gave no sign of US willingness to soften its stance in demanding that North Korea give up its nuclear weapons. Despite previously painting the Trump-Kim summit in Vietnam in a positive light, state news agency KCNA said the meeting hadn't gone as well as expected.

"We continue to work" to deliver on that, Pompeo said.

Russian Federation and China, which border North Korea, have the relatively closest diplomatic relations with the extremely insular North Korean state. Her comments reflect genuine NK frustration, but also seems to be playing hard to get & trying to force U.S. to make move.

"And following that we continued to have very professional conversations", Pompeo pointed out.

While both said that categorization was "inaccurate" or "wrong", there has been little contact between the two sides since the Hanoi summit ended without a deal, and each country said their offer would not change.

North Korea says Pyongyang has no intention of giving in to Washington's demands and Kim Jong Un would be making a statement soon on the possibility of further talks. Hanoi was supposed to be the part of the same old story where the US accepted a meager offer from North Korea and declared diplomatic victory, only to watch the North Koreans take back everything they "gave away" a few months later and demand fresh concessions to refrain from further provocations. "That's Chairman Kim's word. I have every expectation that we'll be able to continue to do that".

"I don't think that really falls in the line of the way that the North Koreans approach things".

Talks in Hanoi collapsed when Mr Trump refused to lift any sanctions until North Korea was completely denuclearised.

"This time we understood very clearly that the United States has a very different calculation to ours", she added. Not quite. North Korea's tactic might be to hope this will initiate a reaction from the US.

South Korea's Unification Ministry revealed on Friday that a weekly meeting with North Korean representatives at the Kaesong joint industrial complex has been canceled by Pyongyang's request for the past three weeks.

At the State Department on Monday, Pompeo said that the North Korean offer in Hanoi "simply didn't rise to the level that was acceptable given what they were asking for in exchange".