North Korea summit: Pence warns Kim Jong-un not to 'play Trump'

President Donald Trump should proceed with the June 12th summit with Kim Jung-Un. Trump's record, after all, attests to his proclivity to renege on commitments. No worldwide verification was conducted because all of those countries are nuclear weapons states approved by the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Moon's government led efforts to resume dialogue with North Korea and gave enthusiastic accounts of its encounters with Kim, spurring Trump to accept an offer of a first-ever meeting between US and North Korean presidents.

In the run-up to the most-consequential summit of Trump's presidency, the president's Cabinet members are also doing their bit to foolishly stoke up concerns.

"I think that Trump imagined he would go into this meeting and be able to have a historic breakthrough with a deal, but it's clear he's starting to realize it won't be as easy as he imagined", said Jean Lee, director of the North Korea program at the Woodrow Wilson Center and a former Associated Press bureau chief in Pyongyang.

Bolton's statement was clearly a provocation for Pyongyang.

However, Pence underscored, "We really hope that Kim Jong-un will seize the opportunity to dismantle his nuclear weapons program, and do so by peaceable means".

In the intervening years, with diplomacy going nowhere, North Korea went on to test five more nuclear devices and develop missiles it said were capable of reaching the United States. Thus this is an unprecedented set of negotiations for the U.S. It's also the type of negotiation North Korea had requested for decades - a meeting of their leader with the U.S. President, claiming that all issues could then be resolved expeditiously. Mentioning the USA elimination of Gadhafi, Trump told reporters at the Oval Office, "That model will take place if we don't make a deal, most likely". Are we going back to where we were in 2017?

A small group of foreign journalists arrived in North Korea on Tuesday to cover the dismantling of the country's nuclear test site later this week, but without eight South Korean media personnel, who were initially scheduled to participate.

I doubt that the US decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal has any impact on North Korea's approach to negotiations with the U.S.

China is North Korea's most important trading partner and it has consistently said it is fully enforcing United Nations sanctions against the North. North Korea historically views denuclearization as applying to the whole peninsula as a mutual arms control process.

Such a scenario can not be ruled out.

According to documents obtained by the Mainichi Shimbun, each of the horizontal shafts is about 200 meters long, U-shaped and has 10 doors - allowing blast gases from the innermost compartment to be stopped by those doors. For example, the US has tolerated the fast-growing nuclear arsenal of Pakistan - one of the largest recipients of American aid in this century - because its nuke capability is subregionally confined.

As such, Trump may need to be prepared to make concessions to Moon, such as shortening the U.S.

US -D.P.R.K. relations in 2017 could be characterized by over-the-top rhetoric, economic sanctions and military threats. To try and overcome Pyongyang's stubbornness, US negotiations have suggested a partial surrender up front of nuclear delivery vehicles (and their components and blueprints), especially the Hwasong-15 and Hwasong-14 ballistic missiles. Gadhafi did not have nuclear weapons like North Korea, but he sealed his fate when he handed Libya's uranium-enrichment centrifuge components and nuclear weapons blueprints to the U.S.

Pyongyang's angry reaction to Bolton's Libya comments had led to suggestions from some in Washington that it had backtracked or altered its position, but this is completely inaccurate, Jeffrey Lewis, an arms control expert at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies, wrote Sunday.

Analysts say Moon will be looking to hold Trump to the diplomatic approach the South Korean leader has championed and invested considerable political capital in, amid heightening skepticism over the talks in Washington.

Vanessa Coleman

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