Will meet Kim in May or early June, says Trump

Will meet Kim in May or early June, says Trump

Kerry Wise
April 10, 2018

Trump revealed this during a cabinet meeting at the White House on Monday.

"The U.S. has confirmed that Kim Jong Un is willing to discuss the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula", an administration official said.

It was part of a bid by Seoul to push for talks between Mr Kim's regime and the U.S., and it appeared to prove successful, with Donald Trump later agreeing to meet his North Korean counterpart by May.

President Trump agreed to the summit on a whim, surprising his advisers and the South Korean envoys who conveyed Kim Jong-un's invitation.

But following multiple reports of secret talks between the Cold War rivals, Mr Trump told reporters Monday he planned to meet Mr Kim in "May or early June".

'Hopefully it will be a relationship that will be much different than it has been for many, many years'.

It followed reports from unnamed U.S. administration officials that the United States was in contact with North Korea in preparation for the talks.

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Pyongyang's frenetic diplomatic activity marks a stunning turnaround after a year of high tensions which saw the North carry out nuclear and missile tests, further isolating the regime and triggering a fiery war of words with Trump.

That was the first time Kim has left the North since assuming power in 2011 and was also his first meeting with another head of state.

The US later heard from other countries, including China, where Kim paid a rare visit, that the North was serious about the offer.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in plans to meet with Kim at the end of April in the demilitarized zone between the North and South.

Moscow's foreign ministry announced Sunday that the North Korean diplomat will sit down with Lavrov for ministerial talks during his visit to the Russian capital from Monday to Wednesday. "And again, this meeting won't take place without concrete actions that match the promises that have been made by North Korea". Officials from the two countries were reportedly communicating with the intent to establish an appropriate venue for the talks and other details ahead of the summit.

Beyond that, a detailed agenda for the talks will need to be set.

North Korea has for decades viewed the American military presence in South Korea as part of a "hostile policy" aimed at bringing about its collapse.