Trump expects Kim summit early next year despite Pompeo postponement

Lamar Ellis
November 8, 2018

Pompeo has travelled four times this year to North Korea to work on achieving an accord.

United States and foreign sources close to the talks paint a picture that's starkly different from the image President Donald Trump sought to convey Wednesday, when he told reporters the administration is "very happy with how it's going with North Korea".

North Korea - considered by human rights groups to be one of the most oppressive regimes in the world - has for years sought formal USA recognition as a way to guarantee the regime's survival.

FILE - Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, right, and Kim Yong Chol, a North Korean senior ruling party official, arrive for a lunch at the Park Hwa Guest House in Pyongyang, North Korea, July 7, 2018.

North Korea is getting increasingly angry at the United States, as talks are deadlocked and tensions between the two countries are on the rise, a source familiar with the discussions told CNN. "We are confident going forward", Palladino told reporters during a regular briefing.

"We're very happy how it's going with North Korea", Trump said at a White House press conference on Tuesday's midterm elections, adding that the meeting will be rescheduled. We think it's going fine.

The State Department said early on Wednesday that the meeting had been postponed, but gave no reason, raising concerns that talks aimed at persuading North Korea to give up its nuclear arms could break down.

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The talks in NY were largely seen as paving the way for a second summit between Trump and Kim Jong Un, who met in Singapore in June.

However, skepticism persists among conservatives in South Korea that Pyongyang could change its position if the two Koreas and the United States were to declare an end to the Korean War and subsequently enter negotiations for a peace treaty to replace the current armistice agreement.

Kim pledged to work toward denuclearization at an unprecedented first meeting with Trump in Singapore but negotiations have made little headway since, with North Korea falling short of US demands for irreversible moves to abandon a weapons program that potentially threatens the United States.

During a press conference on Wednesday mostly focused on midterm US elections, Trump contended that he had made more progress with North Korea than past administrations, and said that with sanctions still in place, he was not in a hurry to reach a deal with Pyongyang, which has halted nuclear and missile tests for the past year.

"The fear from America's perspective would be that the South Koreans might go too fast and agree to things that would involve, for example, our troops, our economic postures that we wouldn't be prepared to give [at this stage], without perhaps getting significant concessions on reductions of weapons testing", retired U.S. Ambassador Kristie Kenney said Wednesday.

Russian Federation said in October it was time to consider the possibility of relaxing the worldwide restrictions against Pyongyang amid commitment expressed by North Korea's leadership to denuclearize of the Korean Peninsula. -North Korean meetings in Pyongyang in early October.

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