Future of North Korea summit still unclear despite high-level talks

Posted at 8:12 PM, May 31, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-31 22:12:51-04

WASHINGTON — After more than four hours of meetings, and a steak dinner with a top aide to Kim Jong Un, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said he was still not sure if the June summit with North Korea would happen.

But on Friday, Kim Yong Chol, North Korea’s former spy chief, will hand deliver a letter from the North Korean dictator to President Trump, a reciprocal message to one Pompeo brought to Pyongyang earlier this month.

A White House visit will be a propaganda win for North Korea. The last similar meeting was in 2000 during the Clinton presidency. But Mr. Trump still wants to meet face to face with Kim Jong Un in Singapore next month.

"Doesn’t mean it gets all done at one meeting. Maybe you have to have a second or third and maybe we’ll have none, but it’s in good hands, that I can tell you," Mr. Trump said.

Diplomats gathered at the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) say progress is slow-moving as they try to hammer out what North Korea is willing to give up in exchange for sanctions relief and security guarantees. Mr. Trump has personally promised not to pursue regime change.