U.S. envoy meets with North Korean officials in demilitarized zone

U.S. envoy meets with North Korean officials in demilitarized zone

U.S. envoy meets with North Korean officials in demilitarized zone

"Ambassador Kim had a meeting just yesterday with members of the North Korean delegation, and Secretary Pompeo will be headed to North Korea later this week", she said.

Pompeo is expected to land in North Korea Thursday for meetings with high-ranking officials on how to move towards diminishing tensions between Washington and Pyongyang.

Less than three weeks ago, Mr Pompeo said the U.S. wanted North Korea to take "major" nuclear disarmament steps within the next two years - before the end of Mr Trump's first term in January 2021.

The Washington Post on Saturday cited unnamed USA intelligence officials as concluding that North Korea does not intend to fully surrender its nuclear stockpile.

Speaking on CBS's "Face the Nation" on Sunday, White House national security adviser John Bolton said that Pompeo would be "discussing this with the North Koreans in the near future about really how to dismantle all of their WMD and ballistic missile programs in a year".

Some US officials believe that North Korea has about 65 nuclear warheads.

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The analysis is now being circulated among other United States intelligence agencies to see if they concur, the first official said. Trump administration officials have deflected criticism of the agreement, describing it as the first step in a negotiated process to persuade Kim to give up his arsenal.

They also say the US has an unrealistic approach to North Korea's denuclearization.

A group of male and female South Korean basketball players will play their North Korean counterparts in a series of games aimed at furthering the growing ties between Seoul and Pyongyang.

Mr Trump said, echoing his sentiments following the historic meeting with Mr Kim in Singapore. That is where all six of North Korea's nuclear tests had been carried out.

But Trump has repeatedly mischaracterized the nature of his deal with Kim, insisting last month that the North Korean dictator had agreed to begin "total denuclearization" right away.

The men and women national basketball teams of South Korea left on Tuesday for North Korea to play friendly matches amid the ongoing rapprochement on the peninsula.

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But Mr Pompeo, Mr Trump's point man for talks, said in Seoul last month that the U.S. would seek "major disarmament" from North Korea by the end of his first term, or about two and a half years from now. "Secondly, they likely targeted (Trump), asking if he was deceived by North Korea because no progress has been reported in the three weeks after the summit".

Bolton also conceded that the speed of denuclearization depends on North Korea's cooperation - which is a wild card.

"The Chemical Materials Institute seems like they have one function, and that's pumping out parts for their missile program", Schmerler said.

"It has not. Physically, we would be able to dismantle the overwhelming bulk of their programs within a year", Bolton said.

With no word yet on why there have been delays, 100 wooden casket-like transit boxes arrived at the border last week to be in position to transport remains to US custody. But the administration has framed it as a goodwill gesture to keep negotiations going, with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo telling ABC News the day after the summit that it was about "setting the right conditions for moving forward with" talks.

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