Singapore: President Trump’s summit with Chairman Kim Jong Un of North Korea is truly a mission of peace as President Donald Trump said on Saturday.
This is how the US Secreyart of State Mike Pompeo descrribed the summit in his opening statement during a press briefing at JW Mariott here on June 11
As a runup to the summit, on Monday (11 June 2016) afternoonm Trump called Prime Minister Abe of Japan and President Moon of South Korea. Earlier during the day the US Ambassador, Sung Kim, led a delegation to meet with Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son Hui and her North Korean delegation. The talks were continuing the next afternoon as the briefing by the US Secretaru of State continued.
Before discussing the summit, the US Secretary of State went on to address a report in The New York Times that suggested that the U.S. team lacks the technical expertise on dismantling North Korea’s weapons program as part of these talks.
Addressing the report directly, Pompeo said:
“For over three months, an interagency working group of over 100 experts across government has met multiple times per week to address technical and logistical issues associated with dismantling North Korea’s weapons programs. They include experts from the military charged with dismantling nuclear weapons; the Department of Energy, including PhDs and experts from DOE labs; and officials from the intelligence community covering North Korea. Those same experts also cover North Korea’s nuclear, chemical, biological, and missile programs.
These experts include dozens of PhDs who have expertise in nuclear weapons, the fuel cycle, missiles, chemical and biological weapons. They have advanced degrees in nuclear engineering, physics, chemistry, aerospace, biology, and other relevant fields.
On the ground in Singapore, we have a team that includes the President’s senior most expert in weapons of mass destruction who can cover any technical needs that the meetings may present.
Any suggestion that the United States somehow lacks the technical expertise across government or lacks it on the ground here in Singapore is mistaken.”
Pompeo further said that North Korea has previously confirmed to the US its willingness to denuclearize, and we are eager to see if those words prove sincere. The fact that the two leaders were sitting down face to face is a sign of the enormous potential to accomplish something that will immensely benefit both of our peoples and the entire world.
Pompeo went on to add: “President Trump believes that Kim Jong Un has an unprecedented opportunity to change the trajectory of our relationship and bring peace and prosperity to his country. We are hopeful this summit will have set the conditions for future productive talks. In light of how many flimsy agreements the United States has made in previous years, this President will ensure that no potential agreement will fail to adequately address the North Korean threat.
The ultimate objective we seek from diplomacy with North Korea has not changed. The complete and verifiable and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula is the only outcome that the United States will accept. Sanctions will remain until North Korea completely and verifiably eliminates its weapons of mass destruction programs. If diplomacy does not move in the right direction — and we are hopeful that it will continue to do so — those measures will increase.
President Trump recognizes Chairman Kim’s desire for security, and is prepared to ensure that a North Korea free of weapons of mass destruction is also a secure North Korea. The President has also expressed his openness to expanding access to foreign investment and other economic opportunities for North Korea if they take the right steps.
All the preparations for the summit have come together very nicely. The President met this afternoon with Minister Lee of Singapore. It was an important opportunity to thank the Prime Minister of Singapore for his partnership in helping make this summit a reality. Singapore is home to over 4,000 American companies and is a longstanding commercial partner, and we thank them for their help in making this summit what it is.
President Trump is going into this meeting with confidence, a positive attitude, and eagerness for real progress. He has made it clear that if Kim Jong Un denuclearizes, there is a brighter future for North Korea. Tomorrow, we will get our clearest indication to date of whether Chairman Kim Jong Un truly shares this vision.”