Trump Declares North Korea ‘No Longer a Nuclear Threat’

One day after the meeting between Kim and Trump in Singapore, North Korea's state-run media were filled with images of its beaming leader standing as an equal on the worldwide stage with the president of the most powerful country in the world - a reminder of just how much of a propaganda coup the North saw in Tuesday's unprecedented summit.

President Moon Jae-in is expected to be briefed personally by the U.S. secretary of state, who landed at Osan Air Base. Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono is also heading to Seoul and is due to meet with Mr Pompeo and his South Korean counterpart.

North Korean state media have reported that President Trump made a raft of concessions to Kim Jong Un that were not stated in the two countries' joint statement, following a first-ever meeting of the leaders in Singapore. -South Korean drills was met with concern.

Ultimately, that may end up being the only option that the U.S. has short of war. North Korea blamed botulism and ingestion of a sleeping pill and dismissed torture claims.

"I think over the weeks that they spent with us, they gained greater confidence that we are sort of no-nonsense but efficient people", he said.

"I think he's going to do these things", Trump said. Already, North Korea has criticized the US and South Korea's military drills, saying they're not helpful for peace talks. "We have no intention of changing our joint drills with the US", Itsunori Onodera said.

The Pentagon has denied that US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis was caught off guard by the president's announcement, saying "there were no surprises".

Trump said the negotiations he has initiated should help improve conditions in the isolated country, which successive USA administrations have targeted for gross human rights violations.

But with no clear signs of how or when the process will unfold, others have been more cautious about the summit's implications.

Pompeo is charged by Trump with leading the follow-on negotiations with North Korea.

Kim's vows to denuclearize were reported by state media Wednesday within that context - that Pyongyang would respond to easing of what it sees as the hostile USA policy with commensurate but gradual moves toward "the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula".

But the brief document from the two leaders' historic meeting provided no details on when Pyongyang would give up a nuclear weapons program that has advanced enough to threaten the United States, or how the dismantling might be verified.

Critics of Trump's opening to North Korea fear that Kim is playing to the ego of a gullible USA president yearning to look presidenty in order to drive a wedge between South Korea and the United States.

North Korea has allowed Interational Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors into its declared nuclear complex in Yongbyon before, according to Robert Einhorn, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution's Arms Control and Non-Proliferation Initiative. Its inspectors have not returned to North Korea since they were expelled from the country in 2009. "We will be there together with North Korea along the way".

Using the military exercises as a massive negotiating chip in exchange for the North denuclearizing is a pretty orthodox policy proposal, but it stunned nearly everybody that Trump seemed to be giving this away for free after his meeting.

In Pyongyang, commuters crowded round the spread of images the first they had seen of the summit, for majority.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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