Published: Sun, May 27, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

White House team to go to Singapore for Trump-Kim summit prep

White House team to go to Singapore for Trump-Kim summit prep

President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on Saturday held their second summit at the truce village of Panmunjeom following their first meeting in April, according to South Korea's presidential office.

Kim believes the summit with Trump will be an opportunity to end decades of confrontation, Moon said.

Moon, who brokered the summit between Washington and Pyongyang, likely used Saturday's meeting to confirm Kim's willingness to enter nuclear negotiations with Trump and clarify what steps Kim has in mind in the process of denuclearization, said Hong Min, a senior analyst at Seoul's Korea Institute for National Unification.

Trump rattled the region on Thursday by cancelling a planned June 12 meeting with Kim in Singapore, citing "open hostility" from Pyongyang.

But on Saturday, Trump said he was still looking at a June 12 date for a summit in Singapore, adding that talks were progressing very well.

"Kim stressed again that he had a firm determination towards complete denuclearisation", Moon told reporters on Sunday.

"It's moving along very nicely".

Their quickly arranged meeting Saturday appears to highlight a sense of urgency on both sides of the world's most heavily armed border: Moon wants to secure a summit that he sees as the best way to ease animosity that had some fearing a war previous year; Kim may see the sit-down with Trump as necessary to easing pressure from crushing sanctions and to winning security assurances in a region surrounded by enemies.

Kim Jong-un and Moon Jae-in
AFP GETTYKim Jong-un and Moon Jae-in held surprise talks

"The White House pre-advance team for Singapore will leave as scheduled in order to prepare should the summit take place", White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said.

The Koreas' talks, which Moon said Kim requested, capped a whirlwind 24 hours of diplomatic back-and-forth.

"There is ZERO disagreement within the Trump Administration as to how to deal with North Korea", Trump asserted in one of his tweet. Kim and Trump's initial decision to meet followed months of war threats and insults between the leaders over the program.

"However, during the U.S". Japan, the United States, and South Korea will continue to put pressure on North Korea to change its policy.

Abe also said it is necessary to make a US -N.

Moon and Kim held talks in the demilitarised zone separating their two nations on Saturday in a scramble to save the June summit. At that meeting, they declared they would work toward a nuclear-free Korean peninsula and a formal end to the 1950-53 Korean War.

Specifically, Moon and Kim will hold "high-level talks" on Friday, the agency added.

The agency said the two leaders had reached a "satisfactory consensus" and expressed "their stand to make joint efforts for the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula".

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