World News

US, South Korea to hold talks on North's denuclearization

US, South Korea to hold talks on North's denuclearization

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Tuesday that the global sanctions campaign against North Korea is an example of U.S. leadership in the world.

The activities at the Yeongjeo-dong missile base near North Korea's border with China and the expansion of a new suspected missile facility 7 miles away are the latest indications that North Korea is continuing to improve its missile capabilities, said Jeffrey Lewis and David Schmerler of the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey in California. "Moreover, in the past year North Korea has significantly expanded a nearby facility that appears to be another missile base", the report said, adding that it was not known if the bases were separate or if one was subordinate to the other.

According to CNN, Pyongyang has upgraded the Yeongjeo-dong missile base in North Korea's mountainous interior and has built up another facility that had not previously been publicly identified.

Last year, the USA led a series of U.N. Security Council sanctions resolutions punishing the North for its tests of nuclear weapons and intercontinental ballistic missiles.

The developments come against a backdrop in which Mr. Trump and his advisers say they are hoping for a second summit with Mr. Kim to discuss progress - or the lack thereof - toward denuclearization.

"They have not lived up to the commitments so far", Bolton said at The Wall Street Journal's annual CEO Council conference in Washington.

Bolton said the U.S. would press ahead with a second meeting shortly after the start of the new year - saying, "January, February" - in the hope of making further progress.

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But despite the meetings and ongoing talks, many in Washington remain skeptical of the North Korea's seriousness.

Kim pretends to disarm and Trump pretends to believe him. North Korea is now seeking security guarantees from the US and relief from the global sanctions.

President Trump committed to provide security guarantees to the DPRK, and Chairman Kim Jong Un reaffirmed his firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

"This is one of the important locations in North Korea our military is monitoring in cooperation with the United States", Roh Jae-cheon, a South Korean military spokesman, said Thursday about the North Korean base.

In October, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met Kim Jong-Un in Pyongyang to verify that the Punggye-ri nuclear test site had been "irreversibly dismantled".

In 2000, the United States sought access to this and other missile bases as part of an agreement to end North Korea's missile program - and was rebuffed by Kim Jong Un's father, Kim Jong Il. "These shelters are similar to the ones seen at the older portion of the Yeongjeo-dong base".


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