White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a tweet that Trump was continuing "to actively prepare" for the anticipated meeting with the North's leader, and that the president would meet with Abe just days ahead of the summit.
Trump announced in a tweet Tuesday that a senior North Korean official, Kim Young Chol, was on his way to NY for meetings with USA officials. "During the South Korea-U.S. summit, President Trump said the U.S.is willing to clearly put an end to hostile relations (between the U.S. and North Korea) and help (the North) achieve economic prosperity if North Korea conducts denuclearization", he said.
He appeared at the Beijing airport Wednesday, and South Korean-based Yonhap News agency cited diplomatic sources as saying that Kim was on an Air China flight to NY that departed later in the day. "Depending on its outcome, the president could join President Trump and Chairman Kim in Singapore". "What's uncertain for Kim is not his intention to denuclearize, but the US stance in hostile relations with North Korea and whether the USA can really secure and guarantee his regime".
In Korea's demilitarized zone, a US delegation is meeting with North Koreans to work on summit preparations, and a separate American team is in Singapore coordinating logistics.
Meanwhile, a team of American diplomats are holding preparatory discussions with North Korean officials at the DMZ.
Ms. Glaser says she was "baffled" by Trump's "poker player" reference to Xi, and to the implication many took from it that the United States was blaming China for North Korea's hardening stance on nuclear negotiations. He also visited South Korea in February to attend the closing ceremony of the Winter Olympics at the start of Kim Jong Un's charm offensive.
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Kim Yong Chol is one of the vice chairmen of the Workers' Party of Korea, the communist organization through which the ruling family controls North Korea, but is not technically the No. 2 behind Kim Jong Un. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright made a historic reciprocal visit to Pyongyang later in 2000 in a bid to arrange a North Korea visit by Clinton. Two weeks of hard-nosed negotiating, including a communications blackout by the North and a public cancellation by the US, appeared to be paying off as the two sides engaged in their most substantive talks to date about the meeting.
The U.S. president still hopes the summit will take place on June 12 in Singapore.
Sung Kim will meet North Korean Foreign Ministry official Choi Sun Hee again on Wednesday on the border, Yonhap reported, citing a diplomatic source, adding that the agenda for the Trump-Kim summit would be roughly worked out.
If the June 12 date stands, officials have only two weeks to finalize details such as where in Singapore the talks will take place and how internationally sanctioned North Korean officials will travel there. While complete denuclearization is rightfully Trump's primary objective for the summit, many have their doubts that the North will dismantle its nuclear arsenal.
Kim Yong Chol - the most senior official from Pyongyang to visit the United States in 18 years - is expected to head to Washington to present an eagerly expectant Trump with a letter from his young leader.
Plans for the high profile sit-down were scrapped by Trump last week, but talks have continued. Kim Yong Chol is, I think, the go-to person.
The North has previously used the term "denuclearization" to demand the United States pull out its 28,500 troops in South Korea and withdraw its so-called "nuclear umbrella" security commitment to South Korea and Japan.
White House officials characterized the letter as a negotiating tactic, created to bring the North back to the table after a provocative statement and a decision to skip planning talks and ignore preparatory phone calls.