Pompeo: US will help North Korea achieve prosperity in return for disarming

Pompeo: US will help North Korea achieve prosperity in return for disarming

South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha, left, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo arrive for press conference at the State Department, May 11, 2018, in Washington.

With Trump announcing Thursday he will meet with Kim in Singapore on June 12, Abe said, "It depends on Mr. Kim whether progress can be made on the abduction, nuclear and missile issues".

He says he had "good" and "substantive" conversations with leader Kim Jong Un during his visit.

Pompeo said USA aim was clear - "to ensure that North Korean doesn't possess the capacity to threaten, not only the United States but the world, with nuclear weapons".

The United States promised Friday that it would work to rebuild North Korea's sanctions-crippled economy if Kim Jong Un's regime agrees to surrender its nuclear arsenal.

Japan says North Korea abducted at least 17 Japanese citizens in the 1970s and 1980s to train agents in Japanese culture and language to spy on South Korea. "Conversations that involved deep complex problems, challenges; the strategic decision that Chairman Kim has before him about how it is he wishes to proceed and if he is prepared, in exchange for the assurances we are ready to provide to him, if he is prepared to fully denuclearise". Abe also said that global sanctions should stay in place against North Korea and any rewards must wait until Kim fully abandons his nuclear and missile programs, AP reports.

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Pompeo, who held talks Pyongyang's young leader over the weekend, even said "we have a pretty good understanding between our two countries about what the shared objectives are".

"If Chairman Kim chooses the right path, there is a future brimming with peace and prosperity for the North Korean people", he said.

Pompeo's promise of an economic carrot to match the stick of "maximum pressure" may reassure observers who are concerned that Seoul and Washington's objectives are not exactly aligned. "I hope Mr. Trump will make a breakthrough to achieve our goals".

"We are very clear that sanctions remain in place until and unless we see visible, meaningful action taken by North Korea on the denuclearisation track", Ms Kang said.

Amid concerns North Korea will demand the US withdraw its troops from neighboring South Korea, Ms Kang emphasised the US military presence there must be "a matter for the US-ROK alliance first and foremost", using an acronym for South Korea's official name, the Republic of Korea.

To the USA, that means the North giving up the nuclear weapons it has already built.

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