Pompeo sees 'bumpy' North Korea talks, but hopes for several more chances

By David Brunnstrom WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S.

Reuters April 25, 2019 05:06:52 IST
Pompeo sees 'bumpy' North Korea talks, but hopes for several more chances

Pompeo sees bumpy North Korea talks but hopes for several more chances

By David Brunnstrom

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday that U.S. talks with North Korea would be "bumpy," but expressed hope there would be several more chances to discuss how to move forward to the country's denuclearisation.

In an interview with CBS News, Pompeo said North Korea's possession of nuclear weapons put it at risk rather than making it safe.

The outcome hinged ultimately on whether North Korean leader Kim Jong Un made the strategic decision to give up his country's nuclear weapons, Pompeo said.

"It’s an enormous challenge for that country to make its shift," he said. "It has for an awfully long time told its people that those nuclear weapons were the thing that kept them secure. They now need to shift to the narrative to 'those are the things that put them at risk.'"

He said both sides had learned a lot from a second summit between Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump in Hanoi in February, which broke down without agreement on the denuclearisation demanded by the U.S. side and sanctions relief sought by the North Koreans.

Pompeo said that in Hanoi, "there was a lot more nuance to the conversation than just, ‘Hey they had a position, we had a position; we walked away.’"

"We hope we can build on that. ... we’re very focussed on getting the right set of incentives – for both sides - so we can achieve the objective. It’s going to be bumpy, it’s going to be challenging. I hope that we get several more chances to have serious conversations about how we can move this process forward."

The future of U.S. engagement with North Korea has appeared to be in limbo since the Vietnam summit, with no sign of direct contact between the two sides, although Pompeo has said they have discussed how to move forward.

On Wednesday, Kim arrived in Vladivostok, Russia, for a summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

With negotiations with Washington stalled, Pyongyang is looking for alternative sources of international support, including from Russia, and for possible relief from sanctions.

In the CBS interview, Pompeo brushed aside a call last week by a North Korea official for him to be replaced in talks by someone more mature, saying it had come from "a mid-level guy." Pompeo said last week he would remain in charge of the U.S. negotiating team.

He did not respond to reports saying his North Korean counterpart in previous talks, Kim Yong Chol, had been sidelined since Hanoi.

(Reporting by David Brunnstrom; Editing by Peter Cooney)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

OPEC+ sticks to plan to ease oil output cuts from May 1
Business

OPEC+ sticks to plan to ease oil output cuts from May 1

By Rania El Gamal, Olesya Astakhova and Ahmad Ghaddar DUBAI/MOSCOW/LONDON (Reuters) - OPEC, Russia and their allies will stick to plans for a phased easing of oil production restrictions from May to July amid upbeat forecasts for a recovery in global demand and despite surging coronavirus cases in India, Brazil and Japan. The group known as OPEC+ ditched plans to hold a ministerial meeting on Wednesday, four OPEC+ sources said, following Tuesday's meeting of ministers who are members of a market monitoring panel.

U.S. consumer confidence soars to 14-month high; house prices accelerate
Business

U.S. consumer confidence soars to 14-month high; house prices accelerate

By Lucia Mutikani WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. consumer confidence jumped to a 14-month high in April as increased vaccinations against COVID-19 and additional fiscal stimulus allowed for more services businesses to reopen, boosting demand and hiring by companies. The upbeat survey from the Conference Board on Tuesday, which also showed a strong increase in vacation plans, suggested the economy continued to power ahead early in the second quarter after what appears to have been robust growth in the first three months of the year, believed by many economists to have been the second strongest since 2003.

Musk trolls Bezos as space race between world's richest men heats up
Business

Musk trolls Bezos as space race between world's richest men heats up

(Reuters) - The space race between the world's two richest men went into hyperdrive on Tuesday after Tesla chief Elon Musk took a swipe at Jeff Bezos' attempt to challenge a major NASA contract. The two billionaires, who have been trying to launch long-range orbital rockets, were competing for a coveted contract from the government to build a spaceship to deliver astronauts to the moon as early as 2024. Musk won.