Pompeo said that while he saw progress in Pyongyang, the United States was not relaxing the current sanctions regime or changing its "ironclad" commitment to defend allies South Korea and Japan.
America has about 28,500 troops based in South Korea and they routinely train with their local counterparts. The North's state media normally lead their television bulletins and front pages with Kim's doings, but a seven-day absence from the headlines, including during Pompeo's recent visit, had prompted speculation on his whereabouts among Korea-watchers.
North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un (4th R) and President Donald Trump (3rd L) attend a working lunch with their respective delegations at their historic US-North Korea summit, at the Capella Hotel on Sentosa island, June 12, 2018, in Singapore.
During Mr Pompeo's trip relations between the U.S. and North Korea appeared to take a dive as Pyongyang accused the U.S. of a "gangster-like mindset" during the high-level negotiations.
However, he did not go into detail about what was actually achieved during his latest stay in Pyongyang.
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He alluded to an exchange between Pompeo and chief North Korean negotiator Kim Yong Chol in Pyongyang.
The KCNA article read that the North expected the USA would bring a "constructive proposal" meant to help build mutual trust, which the regime was planning to respond to by "doing something" that "corresponds with it". "We know it is a real possibility because we see how Vietnam has traveled this remarkable path", Pompeo said.
Before heading to Europe for the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit, Trump was asked about news reports that secretary of state Mike Pompeo recently delivered to Kim a CD of the song "Rocket Man" by Elton John on his behalf.
"If those requests were gangster-like, the world is a gangster", Pompeo told reporters in Tokyo, citing United Nations resolutions.
Pompeo also highlighted that the economic sanctions now imposed on the North "will remain in place until final, fully verified denuclearization as agreed by Chairman Kim occurs".
The North Korean statement, published by the government mouthpiece Korean Central News Agency, carefully focused its criticism on the talks with Pompeo and avoided an attack on President Donald Trump, who has placed great importance on his personal relationship with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un since their meeting in Singapore. The holdup, I would imagine, is that North Korea wants the United States to pay the expenses for the excavation of the remains, which, in reality, have been ready to be sent for many years.