May 24, 2018

United States to North Korea: No Sanctions Relief Until Permanent, Verifiable Denuclearization

15 May 2018, 03:13 | Erma Lawrence

EPAMelania Trump North Korea released the three US citizens

Melania Trump and Donald

Abe also said such an opportunity could only follow successful talks between Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump next month, which would raise expectations for an overall resolution of the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula.

"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.

President Trump announced Pompeo's trip to the hermit kingdom on Tuesday, saying he was going there to prepare for the upcoming meeting between the president and Kim.

Pyongyang previously withdrew from the treaty in 1993, but later reached an agreement with Washington, the Agreed Framework, in 1994. Given that it's Trump we're dealing with, I do not like the odds. As the Iranians discovered this week, agreements inked by one US president arenít always honoured by his successor.

"North Korea did not foresee the destructive power of these sanctions", Thae told the interview.

From tax reform to worldwide trade to foreign policy, Trump has pursued a high-risk, high-reward approach that advisers say can help produce results on longstanding problems - and that critics warn could trigger unsafe repercussions all the way from a trade war to global conflict.

North Korea hates South Korean activists, many of them evangelical Christians who smuggle out defectors and send anti-Pyongyang literature and Bibles into the North through its border with China. "Commerce Department has been instructed to get it done!" I remain skeptical that Kim will ever give up his hard-won nukes and missiles, even for an ironclad US promise never to attack or seek regime change, which is what Kim says he wants.

"The next few weeks will be critical, requiring air-tight coordination between our two countries", Kang said, noting that South Korean President Moon Jae-in would be in Washington to see Trump later this month. -North Korea summit will aim to "realize CVID", using an abbreviation for "complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantlement" of the North's nuclear program.

But it is a matter of fierce debate among diplomats and Korea experts whether Kim would surrender his nuclear arsenal.

Kang stressed the importance of the USA troop presence on the Korean peninsula, and argued that the removal of US forces from the area should not be part of negotiations. Currently, South Korea is doing much better economically than North Korea, and Pompeo pointed out that with help from the U.S., Kim could see his country flourish and do well like his southern neighbors.

Trump could also raise the issue of US citizens who are now incarcerated in North Korean prisons.

North Korea's nuclear complex is significantly larger than Iran's.

USA government aid to North is not likely, Pompeo and Bolton said.

Pompeo spent 13 hours in Pyongyang on Wednesday, meeting with Kim for 90 minutes. "I think Kim appreciates the fact this is going to have to be different; both sides have to come to play".

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo brought the prisoners home after his second meeting with Kim.

While some White House aides characterized Trump's moves as evidence of bold thinking, there is also concern that he has little sense of the potential repercussions from some of his big moves, believing that if things don't work out, that he can always just reverse course.

South Korea is one of the world's top 20 economies, with GDP of $1.4tn (£1tn).

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