US officials travel to North Korea to prepare for summit despite uncertainty


American officials on Sunday traveled to North Korea to gear up for a possible summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and President Trump, which was canceled last week but both sides appear to hope could still take place.

The Washington Post on Sunday reported that several officials, including former U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Sung Kim, traveled to North Korea.

A Pentagon official and the White House National Security Council’s Korea expert also traveled to meet with the vice foreign minister of North Korea.

{mosads}The Post said the meetings about Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons program are also slated for Monday and Tuesday.

The State Department confirmed in a statement that U.S. officials are in talks with the North Koreans about the summit.

“A U.S. delegation is in ongoing talks with North Korean officials at Panmunjom,” said spokeswoman Heather Nauert. “We continue to prepare for a meeting between the President and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.”

The meetings come several days after Trump sent a letter to Kim Jong Un announcing the cancellation of the June 12 summit scheduled to take place in Singapore.

But the president in recent days has also said the summit could still take place.

“We are having very productive talks with North Korea about reinstating the Summit which, if it does happen, will likely remain in Singapore on the same date, June 12th., and, if necessary, will be extended beyond that date,” Trump wrote on Twitter Friday.

Trump also told reporters at the White House on Saturday that conversations between the North Korean leader and South Korean President Moon Jae-in “have gone very well.”

Those two leaders met again over the weekend, with Moon relaying that Kim wanted the summit with Trump to happen. Moon said Sunday that Kim is dedicated both to the summit and to dismantling his nuclear program.

— This post was updated at 3:03 pm.

Tags Donald Trump North Korea South Korea United States
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