Pompeo says won't put timeline on North Korea denuclearization steps

Hannah Rogers
June 26, 2018

And on Sunday, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said he is hopeful North Korea would soon return the remains of U.S. service members killed during the Korean War.

The 1950-53 Korean War, and the devastation the country suffered at the hands of the U.S. and its allies, remain a major part of every North Korean's education.

He said Washington hoped to achieve major disarmament by North Korea within the next 2-1/2 years, within Trump's current presidential term, which ends on January 20, 2021.

In this photo provided by South Korea Defense Ministry, North Korean army Col. Om Chang Nam, right, shakes hands with his South Korean counterpart Col. Cho Yong-geun during a meeting at the Customs, Immigration, and Quarantine office in Paju, South Korea, Monday, June 25, 2018.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un met with U.S. President Donald Trump in Singapore on June 12.

Trump announced last week that North Korea returned the remains of 200 us or allied service members lost in the Korean War, while the Pentagon announced on Friday it would indefinitely suspend two training exercises with South Korea.

"We hope that we will have an ongoing process of making progress", CNN quoted him as saying.

Trump said last week the "No 1 statement" in the document he and Kim signed in Singapore was "we will immediately begin total denuclearisation of North Korea", although there was no such statement in the text.

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Lee also said Monday he has confirmation North Korea is in the process of repatriating the remains of US troops from the Korean War.

Mike Pompeo, the USA secretary of state, said he wanted to see continued progress towards North Korean denuclearisation and that the administration would regularly assess Pyongyang's seriousness about abandoning its nuclear program.

Pompeo told CNN that Trump's decision to suspend United States military exercises in the region will continue "only so long as there is a good-faith negotiation progress, productive results being achieved".

North Korea will continue to ignore Japan unless Tokyo halts hostilities against its neighbor, such as large-scale military drills and efforts to boost military readiness, the isolated nation's state media has said.

Last Thursday, state TV showed Kim on his third visit to China, disembarking from his aircraft with his wife Ri Sol-ju affectionately holding on to his arm.

Less than two weeks after the summit, Pompeo suggested it was too soon to expect a detailed roadmap after 40 years of tensions between the two countries.

The South Korean prime minister said moving the artillery is under discussion amid thawing bilateral tensions.

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