North Korean leader wants security guarantee from Washington

President Trump claimed on Monday that he'll meet with Kim Jong-un, " northkorea's leader, in May or early June, putting a timeline for the historical summit in between the president and the Arab Korean strongman. This is the first update on the timing of the planned summit since it was announced.

Trump said Monday he planned to meet Kim in "May or early June".

Kim gave his "profound analysis and appraisal" of the prospects for North Korea-U.S. dialogue at a meeting of the Politburo of the ruling party's Central Committee, the Korean Central News Agency reported. The current U.S. war games in South Korea are expected to continue until the end of April. "I think it's going to be a very exciting thing for the world", he continued.

North and South Korea are also slated to meet April 27 for a summit of their own.

According to a diplomatic source cited by Yomiuri, if the United States "faithfully takes part in the summit", the North Korean leader is ready to be more active and open to receiving worldwide scrutiny and inspection on dismantling his nuclear programs, compared to past agreements such as the Geneva Agreement in 1994 and the Six-Party Agreement in 2005.

CNN reported on Saturday that the USA and North Korea have been holding secret, direct talks to prepare for the summit.

Hearing that the US has confirmed Kim's willingness to discuss "denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula", however, is far from a surprise.

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Kim's reported remarks drew a mixed response from North Korea watchers in Seoul and Washington.

"The U.S. has confirmed that Kim Jong Un is willing to discuss the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula", a senior administration official told the Washington Post, speaking anonymously. A meeting between the two world leaders has been on the table since a surprise announcement was made by a South Korean official in May.

Since sending a high-profile delegation along with athletes to the Winter Games in the South in February, Kim has made his global debut with a visit to Beijing - his first overseas trip since taking power in 2011. "They could even ask for, say, South Korea to get rid of all of its nuclear technology and nuclear reactors". Ri also paid a visit last month to Sweden, which acts as a diplomatic go-between for Washington and Pyongyang.

Details of the proposed meeting, including timing, remain unclear.

It is scheduled to take place without the months of groundwork that usually precedes such meetings.

Amid all this, on Monday, John Bolton will be coming in to fill Lt. Gen H.R. McMaster's shoes as Trump's advisor on national security affairs.

  • Adam Floyd