U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo arrived in North Korea on Wednesday to fine-tune agendas for the planned North Korea-U.S. summit and to negotiate the release of three U.S. citizens detained in the communist state. Pompeo reportedly seeks to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un during his two-day stay in the North to reach a conclusion on the planned summit.
According to The Associated Press and other U.S. media outlet, a U.S. delegation led by Pompeo attended a luncheon meeting with United Frontline Department director Kim Yong Chol, who is overseeing the North’s denuclearization process. “For decades, we have been adversaries,” Pompeo told Kim. “Now we are hopeful that we can work together to resolve this conflict, take away threats to the world and make your country have all the opportunities your people so richly deserve.”
Pompeo also referred to Kim as “a great partner.” Kim responded by saying, “This is not a result of sanctions that have been imposed from outside.” It seems that the North Korean official made the remarks in recognition of the public perception that Pyongyang came to the negotiation table because of international sanctions led by the Trump administration. He also said, “I hope the United States also will be happy with our success. I have high expectations the United States will play a very big role in establishing peace on the Korean Peninsula.”
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