North Korean media report Donald Trump to visit NKorea

Wednesday, 13 Jun, 2018

The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported on Wednesday that Trump expressed his intention to halt US-South Korea joint military exercises, offer security guarantees to the North and lift sanctions against it as relations improve.

The unprecedented encounter in Singapore Tuesday saw the leader of the world's most powerful democracy shake hands with the third generation scion of a dynastic dictatorship, standing as equals in front of their nations' flags.

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 U.S. hostile policy against it with commensurate but gradual moves toward "the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula". The two leaders walked each other and shared a handshake with the flags of the two countries in the backdrop.

KCNA also reported that both leaders had agreed to visit each other in the United States and North Korea respectively.

Pyongyang has reason to feel confident after the meeting which was a major coup for an isolated and heavily sanctioned regime that has long craved global legitimacy.

"His country does love him", Trump said.

He had been imprisoned in North Korea from January 2016 after being sentenced to 15 years of hard labor for trying to steal an item bearing a propaganda slogan from his hotel, North Korea state media said. "We're going to have a great discussion and will be tremendously successful".

After greeting each other, the two leaders planned to sit for a one-on-one meeting that a U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said could last up to two hours, with only translators joining them.

The defense chief added that Japan would continue its own joint exercises with the US and would stick to plans to boost its defense against the ballistic missile threat from the North.

"It's harsh treatment. We fought very hard to get Otto Warmbier back", Trump said in April prior to their release.

Another resident, however, finds the situation intriguing, saying he hopes it bridges the divide on the Korean peninsula and allows families to reunite. Trump said: "That's true".

The KCNA report noted that Kim and Trump walked together after lunch, "deepening friendly feelings" and held a "meaningful photo session" to commemorate the signing of the agreement.

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The president described the North Korean leader as a "very talented" negotiator and said their meeting was "honest, direct and productive".

The parents of Otto Warmbier, the American college student who died after being released from a North Korean prison a year ago, thanked President Donald Trump for the kind words about their son he gave after his historic summit with North Korea's leader.

Tokyo also, however, cautioned that despite Pyongyang's pledge for denuclearisation no concrete steps had been taken and that Japan would not let down its guard.

Trump has in the past condemned it as one of the world's most brutal governments.

It also legitimized Kim, critics charged, feting a regime which stands accused of widespread human rights abuses.

Hyun Lee, an activist with the Solidarity Committee for Democracy and Peace in Korea and writer at ZoomInKorea.org, joins Radio Sputnik's Loud & Clear to discuss the summit and what factors led to its realization.

Trump had said earlier in Singapore that Otto Warmbier was a "very special person" and that his death had galvanized the administration's determination to deal with North Korea.

KCNA said the two leaders ate and walked together, "deepening friendly feelings" towards each other.

"Kim Jong Un invited Trump to visit Pyongyang at a convenient time and Trump invited Kim Jong Un to visit the U.S.", the state KCNA news agency said.

Interested in North Korea?

We're at the beginning of a diplomatic process that will require patience, experience, and close coordination with our allies.

But no rational and objective observer who followed the summit and saw Trump and Kim behaving so cordially can believe that Trump is leading the US into a nuclear war with North Korea.