The Latest: Pompeo urges NKorea to follow Vietnam’s path
HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — The Latest on Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s trip to Asia, including stops in North Korea, Japan and Vietnam (all times local):
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is appealing for North Korea’s leadership to follow Vietnam’s path in overcoming past hostilities with the United States.
Pompeo on Sunday called on North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to replicate Vietnam’s “miracle” of economic growth by improving ties with the U.S., vowing that America keeps its promises with former foes. The comments came after Pompeo brushed aside North Korea’s accusation that the U.S. was making “gangster-like” denuclearization demands.
Pompeo was speaking Sunday to members of the U.S.-Vietnamese business community in Hanoi. He earlier visited North Korea and Tokyo.
He says Vietnam’s experience since the normalization of relations with the U.S. in 1995 should be proof for North Korea that prosperity and partnership with the U.S. is possible after decades of conflict and mistrust.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono have reconfirmed how the two nations will work together, in coordination with South Korea, in a joint effort to achieve a denuclearized North Korea.
Japanese Foreign Ministry officials say in their meeting in Tokyo on Sunday, Pompeo gave Kono details on his latest talks with North Korea, which outlined in detail the steps toward denuclearization the U.S. expects the North to take.
Pompeo also told Kono he had raised in the talks in Pyongyang, which ended Saturday, the issue of Japanese abducted by North Korea, a major sticking point for Japan in its relations with North Korea.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is brushing aside North Korea’s accusation of “gangster-like” demands, vowing that sanctions will remain until leader Kim Jong Un’s pledge to get rid of his nuclear weapons is met.
North Korea’s statement bashed hopes for a quick deal and is sure to fuel growing skepticism in the U.S. over how serious Kim is about giving up his nuclear arsenal.
Speaking in Tokyo after meeting with his Japanese and South Korean counterparts, Pompeo said Sunday that denuclearization will be difficult and that much work remains. But he maintained that progress is being made.
Among the steps are the formation of a working group to determine exactly how North Korea’s denuclearization will be verified, and meeting to discuss the return of remains of Americans killed during the Korean War.