High-Ranking North Korean Official Is Traveling To New York

Kim Jong-un committed to complete denuclearisation, says Moon Jae-in after North-South 'surprise' summit

Kim Jong-un committed to complete denuclearisation, says Moon Jae-in after North-South 'surprise' summit

A U.S. delegation arrived in North Korea on Sunday for preparatory talks ahead of a potential meeting between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, Trump said on Sunday.

Kim, in a telling line from a dispatch issued by the North's state-run news service on Sunday, "expressed his fixed will on the historic (North Korea)-U.S. summit talks".

Photos released by South Korea's presidential office showed Moon arriving at the North Korean side of the Panmunjom truce village on Saturday and shaking hands with Kim Jong Un's sister, Kim Yo Jong, before sitting down with the North Korean leader for their summit.

South Korea's Yonhap news agency has also reported Tuesday morning that Kim Yong-chol arrived in Beijing on Tuesday morning and reserved a flight to New York City.

The U.S. officials are led by Sung Kim, the U.S. ambassador to the Philippines, who formerly was the U.S. ambassador to Seoul and a top negotiator with North Korea in past nuclear talks.

Kim Yong Chol will be the most senior North Korean on USA soil since Vice Marshal Jo Myong Rok met then-president Bill Clinton in 2000. North Korea has officially denied the incident.

The United States has struggled to slow the isolated country's weapons programs, which have become a security priority for Washington given Pyongyang's promise to develop a nuclear-tipped missile capable of hitting the US mainland.

His journey to the United States caps a frenetic few days of meetings between North Korean and American officials.

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Pentagon official Randall Schriver was also part of the US team, along with Allison Hooker, a Korea expert on the White House National Security Council, the USA official said.

Meanwhile, Trump said late Saturday that the June 12 summit was still a possibility.

On Sunday, Trump tweeted that a US team had arrived in the North to make arrangements for the summit.

Family members of victims of the sunken South Korean naval ship Cheonan by North Korean attack march with defaced portraits of Kim Yong Chol on February 24, 2018. Kim has said a formal end to the hostilities, along with a pledge from the USA not to attack his nation, would essentially eliminate Pyongyang's need for a nuclear arsenal.

He is among the small number of North Korean officials who have accompanied leader Kim Jong Un to all four of his recent summits- twice with South Korean President Moon Jae-in and twice with Chinese President Xi Jinping. Instead, the officials said, it brought both sides to the table with increasing seriousness, as they work through myriad logistical and policy decisions to keep June 12 a viable option for the summit. "Meetings are now taking place concerning Summit, and more".

DETROW: But then the key things that happened over the weekend was that there was a surprise summit between Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in, which was another indication talks are serious. But we still don't know - do we? - whether the North Koreans have truly signed on to something that the United States would consider acceptable and would be willing to lift sanctions on North Korea, for example. He's a former US diplomat who's been involved in negotiations with North Korea over the years. Trump pulled out of the meeting Kim Jong Un last week, but then said a day later that it could get back on track.

Howard X said Kim's rise as the third leader of North Korea in 2011 has proved lucrative for him, jump starting a new career in films, commercials and private functions, most often in his home town of Hong Kong.

Trump and Abe also reiterated their support for North Korea's complete, verifiable, and irreversible dismantlement (CVID) of its nuclear program. But in March, when South Korean K-pop groups appeared in Pyongyang, Kim Yong Chol went to speak to the South Korean press that had traveled for the performance and reportedly introduced himself this way: "I'm Kim Yong Chol, the man you blame of sinking the Cheonan".

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