US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo promises North Korea 'prosperous' future

Sheri EvansMay 13, 2018

"We had good conversations about the histories of our two nations, the challenges that we have had between us", Pompeo said during Friday's news conference with South Korea's visiting foreign minister, Kang Kyung-wha.

That meeting has since been set for June 12 in Singapore.

But both Kang and Pompeo insisted that they agreed on the need for the "total, permanent and verifiable" denuclearization of the divided peninsula.

Several hours after the arrival of the three Americans from North Korea, President Trump tweeted, "The highly anticipated meeting between Kim Jong Un and myself will take place in Singapore on June 12th".

Pompeo said Friday the United States aspires to have North Korea as a "close partner" and not an enemy, noting that the US has often in history become good friends with former adversaries.

Speaking to reporters, Pompeo said the United States would be "prepared to work with North Korea to achieve prosperity on the par with our South Korean friends". As Vox reported, this wouldn't be the first time a deal between the USA and North Korea was attempted, with such efforts going on since 1985. And more than two decades and multiple provocative weapons tests after the last accord, the threat from North Korea has only grown.

Over the past year Kim and Trump have added a personal touch to a half-century of global enmity, swapping insults and both openly threatening devastating direct military action.

During Pompeo's visit to North Korea, he promised Kim economic help from the U.S.to bolster his country's economy.

Pompeo spoke to reporters at the State Department a day after returning from a trip to Pyongyang to negotiate with the North Korean leader and retrieve three Americans held by the regime.

"We had good conversations, substantive conversations", shared Pompeo.

The pair, he said, talked "about how it is he wishes to proceed and if he's prepared, in exchange for the assurances that we're ready to provide him, if he is prepared to fully denuclearize".

"It would require a strong verification program and one that we'll undertake with companions world wide", Pompeo added. He said he believes Kim "wants to do something" about reaching an agreement on denuclearization at their approaching summit.

"We're not talking about sanctions relief at this point", Kang said.

The ministry said the North will continue to "promote close contacts and dialogue with the neighboring countries and the worldwide society so as to safeguard peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and over the globe".

"We look forward to positive results in the meeting and take it an important step in promoting the denuclearization of the peninsula, solving the peninsula issue politically, and realizing long-term stability in the region", he added. It has developed into one of Asia's most affluent nations.

"Everyone thinks so", he said, "but I would never say it". Secondly, some predict that Kim will demand that USA troops withdraw from South Korea. Kim Dong Chul had been in custody since late 2015.

In North Korea's bombastic rhetoric, "denuclearization" has, for years, been a byword for USA troop withdrawals from South Korea.

She also underlined that USA forces in the Republic of Korea have "played a crucial role for deterrence and peace and stability" and said the presence of troops in the area is a matter for the alliance between the US and South Korea "first and foremost".

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