United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo

'Progress made' on denuclearisation of N Korea: Pompeo

ANI | Updated: Jul 07, 2018 21:50 IST

Seoul [South Korea], Jul 7 (ANI): United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who was on a two-day visit to North Korea, said that there was progress being made on North Korea's denuclearisation exercise, following a meeting with a high-ranking North Korean official.
Pompeo met with the vice-chairman of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea, Kim Yong-chol in the last two days, where the duo was engaged in intense deliberations on a timeline to achieve the dismantling of North Korea's nuclear programme.
Calling the talks "very productive", Pompeo told media that he "spent a good time" talking about denuclearisation, Yonhap News Agency reported.
Before his departure to Tokyo, he said, "These are complicated issues, but we made progress on almost all the central issues. Some places, a great deal of progress; other places, there's still more work to be done."
Pompeo will brief his South Korean and Japanese counterparts, Kang Kyung-wha and Taro Kono, on the outcome of his meetings in Pyongyang on Sunday (July 8).
The US Secretary of State was supposed to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. But he could not do so and instead, handed over a letter for him to officials on behalf of US President Donald Trump.
On Friday, Pompeo and Kim Yong-chol held high-level talks for three hours, while it increased to six hours on Saturday.
US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said earlier in the day that Pyongyang and Washington D.C. established working groups to discuss on a denuclearisation plan.
Apart from denuclearisation, the two diplomats discussed on North Korea's plan to repatriate the remains of some American soldiers killed in the 1950-53 Korean War, as part of the commitment by the two sides to implement the joint agreement signed during the meeting between Kim and Trump in Singapore last month, Nauert added.
Kim and Trump signed a post-summit joint declaration on June 12, according to which Kim committed for 'complete denuclearisation of Korean Peninsula', while the latter pledged 'security guarantees' to North Korea.
Last week, US National Security Advisor John Bolton said that he expected Pompeo to iron out a plan to achieve denuclearisation of North Korea within a year.
Prior to that, Pompeo remarked that North Korea continued to be a nuclear threat, adding that the US will not ease sanctions unless Pyongyang achieved "complete and verifiable denuclearisation." (ANI)