Thursday, 18 October, 2018

Trump says he has agreed to second summit with Kim Jong

I'll roll out the red carpet for Pope in Pyongyang, says Kim Jong‑un Planned Kim summit narrowed down to 3 or 4 locations – Trump
Melinda Barton | 11 October, 2018, 17:54

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo furiously harangued Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha in a telephone call on September 17 about South Korea's rapid rapprochement with North Korea. But given the apparent pushback against North Korean engagement in Washington's defense, foreign policy and intelligence communities, Seoul's Moon Jae-in administration has little choice but to continue championing Trump.

In a statement released Wednesday by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs following a round of tripartite meetings in Moscow, the three ministers also expressed their support for ongoing talks between the DPRK and both the US and South Korea.

When it comes to foreign basketball superstars who have visited North Korea, one player used to tower above all others: 6-foot-7, five-time NBA champion Dennis Rodman. These projects have been held back by the sanctions against North Korea.

He has encouraged U.S. allies to maintain sanctions on North Korea until it denuclearises as part of his administration's "maximum pressure" campaign against Pyongyang.

China, Russia and North Korea believe it is necessary to consider adjusting United Nations sanctions against Pyongyang at an appropriate time, China's foreign ministry said on Wednesday.

China has sent a diplomatic giant to North Korea.

"They won't do that without our approval", Mr. Trump said of the comments.

He reaffirmed when asked if he had been contacted, "Yes, they do nothing without our approval".

A speech by DPRK foreign minister Ri Yong Ho at the United Nations in September framed sanctions as a barrier to bilateral progress and as an example of USA efforts to coerce the DPRK. But it's clear Seoul is preparing to restart joint economic projects if the nuclear negotiations between the United States and North Korea begin yielding results.

The sanctions ban all North Korean ships entering South Korean ports and cut off most inter-Korean exchanges, including tourism, trade and aid.

South Korea is supplying water in the North Korean border town of Kaesong using a facility in a now-shuttered factory park that had been jointly operated by the rivals.

Seoul shut down the Kaesong factory park in February 2016 in retaliation of a North Korean nuclear test and long-range rocket launch.

The agreement calls for the creation of buffer zones along the Koreas' land and sea boundaries and a no-fly zone above the border to prevent accidental clashes.

He returned home without setting a definite date for the next meeting between Trump and Kim, though he did convince the North Korean leader to allow inspectors to visit the country's nuclear test site and confirm its demolition.

Washington, however, has insisted that efforts to improve relations between the Koreas should move in tandem with efforts to denuclearize the North.

Kang also admitted USA secretary of state Mike Pompeo had been "discontent" with a military agreement between with two Koreas, saying he was not briefed sufficiently. Kang was not specific but her comments are likely to fuel speculation Washington wasn't fully on board before Seoul signed the agreement.

The Trump administration appears concerned that the two leaders are getting too friendly as it seeks to wring further concessions out of Kim - specifically, the irreversible dismantling of North Korea's nuclear weapons program. There has been occasional bloodshed ever since - the 2010 attack on the warship was followed months later by North Korean shelling of a South Korean border island that killed four and gutted homes.

The ministry says the resumption of water supply does not violate worldwide sanctions against the North over its nuclear weapons and missile program.

There were also rumbles within South Korea that the idea of sanctions relief is being discussed prematurely. We can't violate worldwide sanctions.

Earlier this year, in an unusual and still-murky episode, the UN Command in South Korea - headed by a USA general - prevented a South Korean train from crossing the border into North Korea. Still, the lifting of the 2010 sanctions could offer at least some tangible benefits to the North.

However, if they were lifted, by allowing cross-border barter trade - in which goods, but no actual currency crosses borders - North-South trade could feasibly resume without violating global sanctions.