Pompeo calls meeting with Kim Jong Un "good, productive conversation"

While details of the nuclear talks were not immediately available, the U.S. and North Korea agreed to hold a second summit between Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un as soon as possible, according to the South Korean presidential office, which was briefed by United States officials.

"Well, I am really pleased for this opportunity". He left Pyongyang in July hailing progress, only for North Korea to denounce him afterwards for making "gangster-like demands".

Kim Jong-un also praised his meeting with Pompeo.

Trump is pressing to meet with Kim for a second time after their June summit in Singapore produced a vague agreement on denuclearization with few, if any, specifics.

In South Korea, Pompeo appeared alongside President Moon Jae-in, who said the world wanted to know the results of the Pyongyang meeting, "so if the secretary can disclose the results, please tell us".

Pompeo said it was important to hear from the Japanese leader "so we have a fully co-ordinated and unified view".

Pompeo had planned to meet with Kim on Sunday's trip - his third to Pyongyang as secretary of state - but North Korean officials said Kim's participation in the luncheon had not been expected. "It was another step forward", Pompeo said in a meeting with Moon at the Blue House.

The Koreas in past months have held a flurry of talks, including three summits, amid a global diplomatic push to resolve the nuclear standoff with North Korea. The steps they've taken so far - beginning to dismantle a key missile engine test site and blowing up the tunnels to a nuclear site - have been without global inspectors present to verify, and could be reversed. There was no immediate indication, though, if Pompeo had managed to arrange a much-anticipated second summit between Kim and President Donald Trump.

Pompeo's last trip to North Korea fell short of expectations.

"North Korea's deputy foreign minister is now in Moscow for talks with Chinese and Russian officials", he reported.

He did not meet Kim during that trip, which ended on poor terms.

That is not how Pyongyang sees things, nor is it the approach being advocated by Seoul.

At his last meeting with Moon, he expressed willingness to allow outside observations of key missile facilities and, for the first time, to "permanently" scrap North Korea's main nuclear complex in Yongbyon.

In an interview with the Washington Post, she said the North could agree to dismantle Yongbyon, its signature nuclear site, and in exchange, the United States would declare a formal end to the Korean War, but the North would stop short of delivering an exhaustive list of its nuclear facilities.

The United States has customarily been wary about signing a peace treaty - a demand that North Korea has been making for decades - partly on the basis that such a deal could invalidate the presence of USA troops in South Korea. He has won dozens of awards, including the UN Human Rights Prize in 2008, for his work with survivors of sexual violence in South Kivu.

North Korea's acceptance as a nuclear state could also rattle the decades-long Nuclear Non-proliferation treaty and trigger a nuclear arms race in Northeast Asia by leading many in Seoul and Tokyo to question the American guarantee to protect its allies.

He then held a working dinner meeting with Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha.

Pompeo will also visit Beijing on Monday as he concludes his four-nation visit to the region.

  • Rogelio Becker