Trump says summit with North Korea’s Kim will be in Hanoi, Vietnam

Erika Holt
February 10, 2019

Modern relations with Vietnam are seen as a model for U.S. ties with the North.

Stephen Biegun, the US Special Representative for North Korea, said preparatory talks had been productive, but more dialogue was needed ahead of the summit scheduled for Vietnam from February 27-28.

Trump took up the matter during his first summit with Kim in Singapore in June at Abe's request.

"I am confident that if both sides stay committed, we can make real progress".

"Special Representative Biegun and Special Representative Kim agreed to meet again in advance of President Trump and Chairman Kim's second summit", it added.

Vietnam was reunited under Hanoi's control in 1975 after communist troops from the North captured the southern capital, then called Saigon and now known as Ho Chi Minh City.

Traffic ride past a Communist party poster in Hanoi, Vietnam.

A foreign ministry official told reporters on Thursday, . that the US envoy has promised to brief the South Korean government first on the details of what was discussed.

Vietnam is also seen as a model of economic and political reform for the North to follow.

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The heads of state adopted a joint statement, in which Pyongyang confirmed its principled readiness to carry out full denuclearization, while the U.S. agreed to provide security guarantess to North Korea. "As you know, inter-Korean relations, US-North Korea relations and denuclearization are in a virtuous cycle".

The official, who was granted anonymity to discuss the preparations for the meeting, said Vietnamese officials considered their capital a more prestigious setting, and that Trump did not particularly care either way.

During his three-day trip to North Korea, Biegun met his Pyongyang's counterpart Kim Hyok Chol this week to discuss the second meeting between the leaders of the two countries.

During his recent State of the Union speech, Trump confirmed longstanding rumors that a second US-DPRK summit is in the works.

Those members include Kim Yong Chol, former military intelligence chief and one of Kim Jong Un's closest aides; Kim Song Hye, a senior official in charge of reunification; and Choe Son Hui, the vice foreign minister.

The progress on North Korea giving up its nuclear weapons program has been negligible amid differences between the two sides.

While agreements were made in the first summit, the USA refusal to give North Korea anything in return for its progress on denuclearization was quickly damaging the confidence in the process, and slowed everything to a virtual halt.

But while North Korea has refrained from further nuclear and missile tests, it is yet to make any concrete commitment to eliminating its arsenal.

In a speech at Stanford University last week, Mr Biegun said the USA would not agree to lift sanctions until this happens, but he indicated it could provide assistance in other ways, saying: "We did not say we will not do anything until you do everything".

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