White House Still ‘Actively Preparing’ for Summit with Kim Jong-un

Before agreeing to their historic summit, US President Donald Trump and North Korea's Kim Jong Un spent months trading taunts and insults
KCNA VIA KNS/AFP/File -, SAUL LOEB

The White House confirmed President Donald Trump continues efforts to meet with Kim Jong-un to discuss peace and denuclearization in the region.

“The United States continues to actively prepare for President Trump’s expected summit with leader Kim in Singapore,” White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement.

Sanders confirmed that North Korean vice chairman of the Central Committee, Kim Yong-chol, was currently traveling to New York City for a meeting with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo later in the week.

The statement confirmed that the United States has a delegation meeting with North Korean counterparts in the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea.

The delegation includes Sung Kim, U.S. ambassador to the Philippines; Allison Hooker, director for Korea for the National Security Council; and Randy Schriver, assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific Security Affairs at the Department of Defense.

White House Deputy Chief of Staff Joe Hagin and a pre-advance team are still coordinating logistics for the summit with Kim Jong-un, although the White House did not specify a date.

The original summit between the two leaders was planned for June 12. On Thursday, Trump issued a letter to Kim canceling the meeting, citing statements of “tremendous anger and open hostility” from the North Koreans.

North Korean officials immediately changed their tone about the proposed talks, leading Trump to appear more optimistic about them actually taking place.

The White House also confirmed that National Security Adviser John Bolton continues to speak frequently with South Korean and Japanese officials about the proposed summit.

Sanders also revealed that President Trump will host Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the White House on June 7.

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