Donald Trump, Kim Jong Un to hold historic meet

U.S. President Donald Trump will not meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un unless Pyongyang takes "concrete actions", the White House said on Friday as it faced criticism for agreeing to talks that would give North Korea worldwide legitimacy.

"The president will not have the meeting without seeing concrete steps and concrete actions take place by North Korea", Sanders said, specifically mentioning denuclearization.

"He was kept fully informed of yesterday's White House meetings as they progressed", Goldstein said. But for now, according to Axios, the State Department's Special Representative for North Korea is retiring, there's no permanent ambassador to Seoul and the assistant secretary for East Asia hasn't yet been confirmed.

"That's yet to be determined", she said.

North Korea, considered the most repressive communist regime in the world, has outlawed all media outlets not fully controlled by the government.

North Korea conducts its first flight test of an ICBM, the Hwasong-14, which Kim calls the North's "package of gifts" for the U.S.'s Independence Day.

For his part, Sanders, a presidential contender in the 2016 election, said that he is "very anxious about North Korea's nuclear capability" and seemed skeptical that Trump is taking diplomacy seriously.

If genuine, the development represent a remarkable about-face by the North Korean leader, who within the a year ago has exploded what was widely believed to be a hydrogen bomb, and has tested intercontinental ballistic missiles meant to have US cities within range - New York, Washington, D.C. and Chicago.

"Those may have been his words, but that's not how I took it", said Swift, who was expected to retire in May.

On Thursday evening, following a meeting at the White House, South Korean National Security Adviser Chung Eui-yong announced that Kim had offered Trump a chance to meet in person and that the American president had accepted.

It's been 64 years since the Korean War ended in a stalemate, dividing the peninsula into communist North and democratic South.

"We're going to have to start talking to them. He's inviting him to be treated as an equal to the United States of America - a goal sought by every Kim since North Korea began its nuclear program", Vipin Narang, an associate professor of political science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who specializes in nuclear non-proliferation and Asian security, told the Associated Press.

"If Chairman Kim did not speak out, this problem would not have been addressed", Iizuka said.

"I believe the Pyeongchang Olympics and Paralympics as well as our endeavors for peace will help create a new global peace", Moon said.

In a statement the previous evening, Sanders said Trump "will accept the invitation to meet with Kim Jong Un at a place and time to be determined" and said the U.S. looks "forward to the denuclearization of North Korea".

Chung says Kim told the South Koreans he is "committed to denuclearization" and pledged that "North Korea will refrain from any further nuclear or missile tests". "Also, no missile testing by North Korea during this period of time".

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the buck against six rivals, went down 0.4 percent to 90.11 as of 1830 GMT.

"Chemistry wise, Trump and Kim might get along; they both strive to be bold and could be eager to strike a deal", said Choi.

Kim responded by calling Trump a "mentally deranged U.S. dotard". Kim called Trump a "a mentally deranged US dotard". "Hopefully, the agreement will be implemented", Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said.

  • Rogelio Becker