Thursday, 24 January, 2019

N Korea nuclear disarmament by 2020

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and President Trump in Singapore on June 12 North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and President Trump in Singapore on June 12
Steven Clarke | 13 June, 2018, 23:12

North Korean state media broke form and has run two days of stories on Kim Jong Un's trip to Singapore, including a huge spread on his meeting with President Donald Trump.

"We are ready to write a new chapter between our nations", Trump told reporters after the much-talked about summit - the first between a sitting U.S. president and North Korea's top leader. A quick answer: Probably not.

The KCNA report, as well as the joint statement after the summit, also mentioned that the president had offered North Korea unspecified security guarantees, which Pyongyang considers an indispensable precondition for nuclear disarmament.

And after Trump made a fat joke and showed Kim the inside of his limo, they signed their "historish agreement", he said.

The pair promised in the document to "build a lasting and stable peace regime" on the Korean Peninsula and to repatriate remains of prisoners of war and those missing in action during the Korean War.

"We should be working diligently to transform North Korea and our relationship with it", he tweeted. But he added "our hostages" are back home and testing, research and launches have stopped.

As Trump acknowledged that denuclearisation would not be accomplished overnight, the North suggested Wednesday that Trump had moved away from his demand for complete denuclearization before US sanctions on the long-isolated country are removed. "There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea", the president wrote on Twitter shortly after arriving back in Washington.

"I am hoping for denuclearisation and a peace agreement, and also for North Korea's economy to open up".

Up early in Singapore, Trump tweeted with cautious optimism: "Meetings between staffs and representatives are going well and quickly ... but in the end, that doesn't matter".

"Before taking office people were assuming that we were going to War with North Korea", he continued in a second post.

A pair of Democratic senators on Wednesday introduced an amendment to the annual defense policy bill that would stop President Trump from withdrawing US forces from South Korea without the Pentagon's input.

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On Wednesday, North Korean state media said Trump had also agreed to the North's desire for a step-by-step disarmament process with corresponding USA concessions at each step, rather than immediate disarmament as the U.S. had initially sought.

Several U.S. lawmakers expressed their approval of Trump's meeting with Kim, but said they were skeptical of the U.S. leader's declaration that North Korea no longer poses a nuclear threat.

He also announced an unexpected end to US-South Korea military drills.

U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un shake hands during an expanded bilateral meeting at the Capella Hotel on the resort island of Sentosa, Singapore, June 12, 2018. He said cancellation of the drills "is really a bad idea. and [Trump] betrayed our people".

On Tuesday the USA and North Korean leaders met face-to-face for the first at the Capella Hotel on Sentosa Island in Singapore.

But North Korea's confidence began to show nearly as soon as Kim arrived in Singapore on Sunday. It's illegal to show the North Korean flag in the South.

Singapore Summit news hub is now active on the AP News site and the mobile app.

Kim responded: "It was not easy to get here".

He would not say whether that included the possibility of withdrawing US troops from the Korean Peninsula, but said the USA was "prepared to take what will be security assurances that are different, unique, than America's been willing to provide previously".

Backdrops of USA and North Korean flags, both red white and blue, were also prominent in the Rodong Sinmun, which has previously lashed the United States as a "gangster-like imperialist", and "cancer-like entity".

No further clarity came during the signing itself, with Trump calling it "a pretty comprehensive document" that "we're both very honored to sign".

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