Tillerson says plans for North Korea meeting 'in the very early stages'

Cheryl Sanders
March 13, 2018

President Trump also said he hopes there will be no further North Korean missile tests during contacts with USA officials.

Reports out of South Korea suggest that among the priorities for North Korea's Kim Jong-un in upcoming talks with President Trump is to secure a peace treaty and to establish formal diplomatic relations with the US.

"We have not heard anything directly back from North Korea, although we do expect to hear something directly from them", Tillerson said during a press conference in Nigeria. "I know those are all questions that people are anxious to have answers to".

Sanders said that the maximum pressure campaign on North Korea is working. South Korea's national security adviser, Chung Eui-yong, who delivered the invitation to Trump after a visit by his delegation to Pyongyang, said Kim had offered to put Pyongyang's nuclear and missile program on the table.

"There's already been a bit of confusion in the messaging from the White House so it probably makes sense to get some of the ground rules established before go public with it", said Abrahamian.

USA national security adviser H.R. McMaster briefed U.N. Security Council envoys in NY on Monday. "I think it's going to be very important that those conversations are held quietly" between Washington and Pyongyang", Tillerson said. "I have a lot of confidence in my ability to create the conditions for successful negotiations between two very disparate parties".

During the meeting, McMaster and Haley urged the global community to maintain maximum pressure on the North Korean regime and asked Council members to devote the political will and resources necessary to fully implement UN Security Council resolutions to hold the regime accountable. This was meant to cease hostilities pending a peace treaty, but that treaty never happened.

Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono said after talks with Suh Hoon that Tokyo and Seoul agreed that maximum pressure must be maintained on North Korea until it takes concrete action to address concerns about its weapons programmes.

"Talk is certainly better than war", she said. North Korea may feel all that needed saying was int he letter itself. "The US wants a peace treaty at the end of the denuclearization process, while for the North, it's the precondition for its denuclearization".

Signing a peace treaty would require addressing issues regarding the US military's presence in South Korea and its transfer of wartime operational control to South Korea and United Nations forces in South Korea, Koh said.

The Trump-Kim summit is expected to take place by May of this year. The South Koreans who met with Kim said he accepts that the next round of joint exercises will go ahead. Some reports indicate the United States will not have an aircraft participate in the joint military drills in an effort to mitigate the breakthrough in diplomacy. The South Korean Defense Ministry declined to comment on the planned drills.

Other reports by iNewsToday