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Top North Korean official headed for NY

Top North Korean official headed for NY

North Korean movements are being reported as USA officials were seen in Seoul and Panmunjom, conducting working-level talks with the North Koreans over the weekend.

Kim Chang Son, a top aide to Kim Jong Un at the State Affairs Commission and known as the leader's de facto chief of staff, arrived in Singapore Monday night.

"The United States continues to actively prepare for President Trump's expected summit with leader Kim in Singapore".

He would be the most senior North Korean official to visit the United States in 18 years.

In a flurry of diplomacy over the weekend, Kim Jong Un and South Korea's Moon held a surprise meeting on Saturday at the border village of Panmunjom, during which they agreed the North Korea-U.S. summit must be held. It was Trump who said during his trip to Beijing in April "that if China helps us with North Korea, he'd be willing to give China a better deal on trade", she says.

The U.S. president still hopes the summit will take place on June 12 in Singapore.

He was set to fly to Washington on Tuesday but changed his plan, deciding leave for NY on Wednesday, which came amid speculations he could have met Chinese authorities during this interval.

The statement's reference to ballistic missiles echoes comments made by U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo during testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last week.

South Korea's Yonhap News said Tuesday it saw the name of Kim Yong Chol on the passengers' list for a flight Tuesday from Beijing to Washington. It earlier reported that he was heading straight to Washington, but later said he changed his flight to NY.

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"We agreed to meet before the U.S". Kim may see a meeting with Trump as necessary to easing pressure from crushing sanctions and to winning security assurances in a region surrounded by enemies. North Korea's former spy chief, Kim Yong Chol is now a vice chairman of the ruling Workers' Party.

The future of North Korea's nuclear program, which has been a source of worldwide tension for decades, US security guarantees and coordination for a Trump-Kim summit are likely to be at the top of the agenda, analysts said.

This week's talks are aimed at determining whether North Korea is prepared to make sufficient commitments toward getting rid of its nuclear weapons, a US official said, despite Pyongyang's insistence it will not unilaterally denuclearize.

United States officials said the North Korea delegation would come to Washington to meet Trump and deliver the message on Friday, one week after Trump had abruptly called off preparations for the planned June 12 summit in a sharply-worded letter of his own. Mr. Trump announced last week he was ending them over North Korean hostilities but now says negotiations have picked back up and he spoke Sunday as if the summit was a "go".

North Korea also demanded the United States stop military exercises with South Korea, the North's Rodong Sinmun newspaper said. "It could be that he lacked the will for the summit or he might not have felt confident", Kim Kye Gwam suggested, poking at president's ego. Any visit to the United States would indicate a waiver was granted.

Moon said on Monday there could be more impromptu talks between the two Koreas in the lead-up to the summit. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders says that since the letter, "the North Koreans have been engaging" with the U.S.

"Everybody knows they are not going to denuclearize", one intelligence official told NBC News.

Was Trump warning the Chinese leader through feigned admiration, some analysts wondered, that he was pushing Mr. Kim too far into a position that risked scuttling the advancing diplomacy between the United States and North Korea?

Seoul has been advocating an alternative approach in which the North's comprehensive commitment and credible actions toward denuclearization are followed by a phased but compressed process of inspection and verifiable dismantling.


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