Pompeo Warns North Korea: 'Irreversible Denuclearization' Only Acceptable Outcome

Pompeo Warns North Korea: 'Irreversible Denuclearization' Only Acceptable Outcome

"When I woke up this morning I saw the news in the newspaper that our respected Marshal went to Singapore for the North Korea-U.S. summit", said Han Il Gwang, a Pyongyang resident, displaying typical discretion when speaking to an Associated Press Television crew.

The historic first meeting between a sitting US president and and North Korea's leader will take place Tuesday at 9 a.m. when Trump and Kin will meet alone with only translators in the room.

The meeting will be the first time a U.S. President has come face to face with a North Korean leader.

Many experts on North Korea, one of the most insular and unpredictable countries in the world, remain sceptical Kim will ever completely abandon nuclear weapons.

But on the eve of the summit, he altered his schedule, opting to return at about 8 p.m. on Tuesday after a full day of meetings with Kim - nearly 15 hours earlier than previously anticipated.

There were screams of "Kim!"

He also posed for a selfie with Singapore's Minister for Foreign Affairs Vivian Balakrishnan.

As Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Sunday, Washington is pressuring Pyongyang to take a path toward a complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantlement (CVID) of its nuclear weapons. But he says if diplomacy fails to move in the right direction, the sanctions "will increase".

After the meetings, the two teams and other senior officials met for a working lunch, where beef short ribs, sweet and sour pork and "Daegu Jormin", or Korean braised cod, were served for the main course, according to the menu.

A White House read-out of Trump's meetings with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong (lee haz-ee-en lahng) Monday did not include mention of a state visit.

Experts believe the North is close to being able to target the entire USA mainland with its nuclear-armed missiles, and while there's deep skepticism that Kim will quickly give up those hard-won nukes, there's also some hope that diplomacy can replace the animosity between the US and the North.

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Members of the North Korean delegation and security leave the St Regis hotel in Singapore, June 11, 2018.

South Korean media reported that Kim was accompanied by his sister, Kim Yo Jong, and other top deputies.

Some people were grumbling in the wealthy city-state because of traffic jams caused by the summit and the cost of hosting two leaders with massive security needs.

Some 2,500 journalists are reporting on the event, which is costing Singapore government about SGD 20 million. Security is tight throughout Singapore, with armed police roaming the streets and motorcades of the global delegations bringing traffic to a standstill.

Mr Lee said the cost was worthwhile.

Singapore is all set to host Tuesday's much awaited summit between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un over dismantling the North's nuclear weapons programme.

"Given that not too long ago Trump and Kim were trading threats and threatening war, that would certainly qualify as a success of sorts", Kugelman added.

After a handshake, they were soon smiling and holding each other by the arm, before Trump guided Kim to the library where they held a meeting with only their interpreters. The hotel has been surrounded by a tight security presence Monday, but pedestrians have been allowed to pass by the hotel, with some peering in to see what's going on.

The Secretary of State said North Korea has unprecedented opportunity to change the trajectory of its relationship with the U.S. as he promised economic opportunities post denuclearisation.

The North's official KCNA news agency called the summit "historic", saying it would take place in a "changed era" and "under the great attention and expectation of the whole world".

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