Donald Trump sees 'tremendous progress' in North Korea

Donald Trump sees 'tremendous progress' in North Korea

That visit to the North Korean capital saw him again play the role of peacemaker as talks between the U.S. and North Korea appeared on the verge of collapsing.

Kim Yong Un made another pledge to the South's Moon Jae-in on denuclearisaing the North.

"Chairman Kim expressed his wish that he wanted to complete denuclearization quickly and focus on economic development", Moon said.

The United States is ready to restart negotiations with North Korea "immediately", US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday (Sept 19), with the aim of completing North Korea's denuclearisation by January 2021.

The U.S. and South Korean leaders plan to meet in New York City next week during the United Nations General Assembly meeting.

Kim pledged to work toward the "complete denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula" during two meetings with Moon earlier this year and at his summit with Trump.

Jenny Town, research analyst on North Korea at the Stimson Center think tank in Washington, said shutting Sohae, a site with a huge launch tower and other facilities in which North Korea has invested heavily in recent years, would be a major concession from Kim.

North Korea says Kim's grandfather and father, Kim Jong Il, were born at Mount Paektu, a centerpiece of the North's idolization and propaganda campaign to highlight the sacred bloodline of the ruling Kim family.

The leaders of North and South Korea Wednesday hailed a series of agreements they said were aimed at turning the Koreas into a "land of peace without nuclear weapons and nuclear threats".

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"Given how Kim recently suggested a specific timetable for denuclearization, a more concrete agreement than one in Singapore is expected to come out in the next summit".

Mr Moon, who set up the June summit in Singapore between Mr Trump and Mr Kim and is eager for another to happen, also told reporters that he'll convey to Mr Trump his and Kim's desire to get a declaration on ending the Korean War by the end of this year.

In another notable first, Moon directly mentioned the North's denuclearization several times, including at his speech Wednesday in front of the 150,000 North Koreans attending the Mass Games performance. The leaders rode together in a cable auto to reach the lake.

While North Korea has stopped nuclear and missile tests in the past year, it did not allow worldwide inspections of its dismantling of its Punggye-ri nuclear test site in May, drawing criticism that its action was for show and could be reversed.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un was said to have climbed Mount Paektu in "smart shoes" a year ago.

According to the New York Times, the two heads of state met on Wednesday, with North Korean officials and citizens lining the streets and waving flags supporting unity on the East Asian peninsula.

Neighboring countries China, Japan and Russian Federation also welcomed the outcome of the inter-Korean summit - particularly the easing of military tensions and the promotion of peace talks and denuclearization. It also holds importance to both countries as the birthplace of the storied ruler of the first kingdom of Korea. Speaking before Pompeo's announcement, two senior US officials involved in US-North Korea policy voiced fears Kim was trying to drive a wedge between Washington and Seoul.

Other outcomes of the three-day summit include news that the North and South will jointly pursue a bid to host the 2032 Summer Olympics.

They also agreed to withdraw 11 guard posts from the Demilitarized Zone by December and to establish a no-fly zone above the military demarcation line that bisects the two Koreas that would apply to planes, helicopters and drones.

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