Pompeo says he believes there is a 'path forward' in North Korea talks

Pompeo says he believes there is a 'path forward' in North Korea talks
© Kevin Dietsch for The Hill

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Sunday that he sees a "path forward" in the talks between North Korea and the U.S., days after North Korean leader Kim Jong UnKim Jong UnTrump and Pakistan's Khan are a lot alike — but can they master the art of any deals? Majority of voters aren't confident Trump's diplomacy will lead to North Korea denuclearization The Hill's Morning Report - Trump seizes House impeachment vote to rally GOP MORE oversaw the country's most significant military test in more than a year.

Jonathan Karl on ABC's "This Week" asked Pompeo about President TrumpDonald John TrumpChelsea Clinton announces birth of third child Ukrainian officials and Giuliani are sharing back-channel campaign information: report Trump attacks 'the Squad' as 'racist group of troublemakers' MORE's tweets on Saturday, in which the president said Kim "does not want to break his promise to me." 

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"I too believe that there’s a path forward that we can achieve this outcome," Pompeo told Karl.

He noted that there was never "any international boundary crossed" in the test earlier this week. 

"They landed in the water east of North Korea and didn't present a threat to the United States or to South Korea or Japan," Pompeo said. "We know that they were relatively short range.  And beyond that, we know that they weren't intercontinental ballistic missiles either." 

Pompeo added that 50 percent of North Koreans are at risk of "significant malnutrition," and said that the U.S. wants a "brighter future" for the country.

"It’s a very difficult set of conditions there," Pompeo said. "We want a brighter future. That’s why the president continue talks about this. They need to understand that if these nuclear weapons go away, [it will be of] an enormous benefit to their country and keeping them just continues to pose risk." 

North Korea fired multiple short-range projectiles off its east coast on Saturday morning, and images from North Korean state media on Sunday showed Kim overseeing rocket drills. 

Pompeo defended the ongoing diplomatic talks between Pyongyang and Washington, which have failed to result in a nuclear deal so far. 

"We still believe that there's an opportunity to get a negotiated outcome where we get fully verified denuclearization," Pompeo said. "Chairman Kim has repeated that.  He's repeated that quite recently, in fact." 

The secretary of state said he didn't "have anything to add" about reports that some people participating in nuclear deal talks in Hanoi, Vietnam were executed.