High hopes around the globe for 2nd Trump-Kim summit

Barham Salih

Barham Salih

U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un shake hands after signing documents during a summit at the Capella Hotel on the resort island of Sentosa, Singapore June 12, 2018. Our hostages have come home, nuclear testing has stopped and there has not been a missile launch in more than 15 months. If...

"Trump overstates the concerns of "a major war" had he not been elected", NPR correspondents Scott Horsley and Michele Kelemen wrote in NPR's fact check of the speech.

During the address, Trump also revealed that he would be meeting with Kim Jong Un in the future, stating, "Much work remains to be done, but my relationship with Kim Jong Un is a good one. Chairman Kim and I will meet again on February 27 and 28 in Vietnam", he added.

Trump did not say which Vietnamese city would host the two leaders but both the capital, Hanoi, and Danang have been considered as possibilities.

On Wednesday, US Special Representative for North Korea Stephen Biegun traveled to Pyongyang to meet Kim Huok-chol, a former ambassador to Spain, in preparation for the US-North Korea summit and to make progress on the commitments Kim and Trump made at their first summit in Singapore in June a year ago, which included "complete denuclearization, transforming relations of the two countries and building a lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula".

Like North Korea, Vietnam was once locked in a bloody and bitter war with the US. "And, most importantly, Kim has a seat on the stage", Morell said.

US defense officials at a hearing before Congress last week said that North Korea is unlikely to give up its nuclear weapons.




Washington is also keen to show off Vietnam's economic success story, touted by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo during a visit to the country previous year.

"President Trump is ready to end this war", Biegun said last week.

Trump said the United States spent a fortune on a base in Iraq. The U.S. and South Korea are attempting to push Kim to abandon his country's nuclear weapons program in exchange for lifting sanctions and normalizing relations with North Korea's repressive government.

CIA Director Gina Haspel told senators that "of course the regime is committed to developing a long-range nuclear armed missile that would pose a direct threat to the United States".

The developments come after US President Donald Trump visited a US military base in western Iraq in December past year.

North Korea "continues to defy Security Council resolutions through a massive increase in illegal ship-to-ship transfers of petroleum products and coal", states a report summary, as "global banks and insurance companies continue to unwittingly facilitate payments and provide coverage for vessels in ever-larger, multi-million-dollar, illegal ship-to-ship transfers of petroleum products".

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