Pompeo: North Korea Ready to Allow International Inspectors at Nuclear Sites

By Gage Skidmore from Peoria AZ United States of America , via Wikimedia Commons

By Gage Skidmore from Peoria AZ United States of America , via Wikimedia Commons

Both President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un believe "substantive progress" can be made at a second summit meeting, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Monday, adding that arrangements for the leaders to meet are close to being finalized.

"These actions have damaged our mutual trust, cast a shadow over China-U.S. relations, and are completely out of line with the interests of our two peoples", Wang told his visiting American counterpart.

"Separately from the North-US summit, Chairman Kim Jong-un is set to visit Russian Federation, and a visit to North Korea by President Xi Jinping is expected in the near future", Moon said at Monday's Cabinet meeting.

Despite Kim's talk of denuclearization during his first summit with Trump, he has yet to allow any outside inspectors into his country. Chairman Kim said he's ready to allow them to come in.

Regardless of the push and pull and the apparent lack of a breakthrough, it was an improvement on Pompeo's visit three months ago, when Kim declined to meet him at all.

"We require that the U.S. stop such misguided actions", he said, adding that the two countries should pursue cooperation "and not descend into conflict and confrontation".

Wang and Pompeo discussed a range of issues, such as North Korea and the trade war.

The brief-but-tense scene at the start of a day-long visit to Pyongyang signaled just how hard the secretary of state must fight for even the smallest concession from Kim's regime as he seeks to secure a deal for North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons for good.

Mr Pompeo went there to discuss Pyongyang's nuclear disarmament and set up another meeting between Mr Kim and President Donald Trump following on from June's summit in Singapore.

Wang said Pompeo proposed his visit to China, and the Chinese side was willing to arrange meetings.

He told South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Sunday his latest trip to Pyongyang was "another step forward" to denuclearization but there are "many steps along the way".

Specifically, Pompeo revealed that North Korea agreed to allow worldwide inspectors to survey their nuclear and missile testing sites.

High-level exchanges between the two countries have been frozen, including a planned diplomatic and security meeting between US Secretary of Defence James Mattis and Chinese defence minister Wei Fenghe originally scheduled for mid-October in Beijing.

Following their meeting a day earlier, Kim was heard saying to the top USA diplomat, "I am really pleased for this opportunity".

"North Korea's push for such a declaration could be a ploy to divide the U.S".

State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert seconded the "unified" approach on North Korea, but cited "areas where the United States and China do not agree, including on the South China Sea and human rights", according to a statement.

The US diplomat also met with Xi during a similar trip to the region in June.

"I've never been involved in an global discussion where there weren't differences of view, not only between governments but inside of governments", he said.

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