Trump-Kim meeting to take place on June 12

Last Updated 24 May 2018, 06:02 IST

The historic meeting between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is set to take place on June 12, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told lawmakers on Wednesday.

Testifying before a powerful Congressional committee, Pompeo identified de-nuclearisation of North Korea as one of the top national security priority of the Trump Administration.

"The maximum pressure campaign of diplomatic and economic sanctions is bearing fruit with the historic meeting set to take place on June 12," Pompeo said in his testimony before the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

This campaign, he said, has been undertaken in concert with an unprecedented number of allies and partners.

"Our posture will not change until we see credible steps taken toward the complete, verifiable, and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean peninsula. We are clear-eyed about the regime's history," Pompeo said.

"It's time to solve this once and for all. A bad deal is not an option. The American people are counting on us to get this right. If the right deal is not on the table, we will respectfully walk away," the top American diplomat said.

Pompeo's remarks came a day after President Trump yesterday suggested that his historic summit with Kim "may not work out" even as he asserted that the North Korean leader was "serious" about denuclearization.

Pompeo is the only top American official to have met Kim.

"In my conversations with him, we've talked about what our mutual goals are, the things that the world demands and that America demands, and the things that North Korea wants to see for itself as well," he told Congressmen in response to a question.

"There are places where we still have lots of work to do to find common ground, but he has shared candidly that he understands that economic growth for his people, the wellbeing of his people depends on a strategic shift. And we hope he's prepared to make that," Pompeo said.

America's demands have been unambiguous, he said.

"When I spoke with him, I could not have been clearer about the scope of the verification work that would be required, all of the elements that would be necessary in order for America to understand that there had been real denuclearization," the top American diplomat said.

"He made clear it was important to him that when that time came when those objectives had been achieved, that he in return would receive economic help from America, in the form of private sector businesses, knowledge, know-how," he said.

Pompeo also said that Kim "wanted security assurances from the world, the end of the status that sits between South and North Korea, with the eventual goal of a peace treaty."

The diplomat said he is hopeful that he and President Trump will get a chance to elaborate on that further in the next couple weeks.

(Published 23 May 2018, 16:25 IST)

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