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'Stay tuned' for news on Americans detained in North Korea, Trump tweets

'Stay tuned' for news on Americans detained in North Korea, Trump tweets

Even as Washington presses for the release of the three American prisoners, the parents of a USA college student who died a year ago soon after being release from captivity in North Korea have sued Pyongyang over their son's death, saying Otto Warmbier was "brutally tortured and murdered".

"This is a pretty regular thing", said Jeffrey Lewis, an analyst at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies.

Trump has promised to ensure that North Korea does not get the capability to build a nuclear bomb that can hit the mainland United States.

The NSC official gave the reassurance to South Korea's visiting top security adviser, Chung Eui-yong, who is in Washington for talks on the upcoming U.S.

Another reporter asked Sanders if Trump had talked with Giuliani about the prisoners. "We are working to see USA citizens who are detained in North Korea come home as soon as possible", she said.

The announcement comes after Trump appeared to allude to their release Wednesday. He was later convicted of stealing a propaganda poster.

Defining what is denuclearization is also a "tricky" question because it could cover as far as American ships in the vicinity, American aircraft and missiles back in the USA, according to him.

Two of the three hostages were detained in 2017, after Trump had assumed office.

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North Korea has repeatedly shifted from bellicose threats and violent confrontations to peaceful gestures.

More substantial discussions on the North's denuclearization - including what, when and how it would occur - are expected between Kim and President Donald Trump, who could meet in May or June.

Kim Hak Song, an ethnic Korean who was born in China, was detained in May 2017 and also accused of "hostile acts".

Donald Trump gave credence to the claim after he posted a cryptic Tweet on Wednesday night, which said: "As everybody is aware, the past Administration has always been asking for three hostages to be released from a North Korean Labor camp, but to no avail".

China is North Korea's only major ally and its most significant economic and diplomatic supporter. North Korea conducted its first nuclear test in 2006. Those were key objectives for the regime, Lewis said.

Kim may have decided that it was worth preserving what he had rather than risk a pre-emptive US strike.

While the Kim-Trump talks is shaping up to be crucial, there's still widespread doubt whether Kim will ever agree to entirely abandon his nuclear weapons when he apparently sees them as providing his only guarantee of survival in a region surrounded by enemies.

"They are staying in a hotel on the outskirts of Pyongyang", Choi Sung-ryong, a South Korean activist with contacts in the North told AFP earlier, adding the three were being kept separately but "going on tours, receiving medical treatment and eating good food".


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