According to South Korean officials, North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un wants to complete the denuclearization of his country by the end of President Donald Trump's first term.
What are the details?
Kim Jong Un said that he wanted to “achieve denuclearization” and was ready for “stronger measures” to be taken to ensure that he did so, according to South Korean officials who met with Kim on Wednesday.
Kim reportedly also did not have anything negative to say about Trump, and expressed that he wanted his relationship with the U.S. to continue to improve.
So far, no details have been released from the Kim regime regarding what this denuclearization path might look like.
These statements were made during negotiations regarding a summit between North and South Korean leaders, which is expected to take place Sept. 18-20. The summit will deal with “practical measures” leading to denuclearization, according to South Korean President Moon Jae-in's national security adviser Chung Eui-yong.
In response, Trump tweeted his thanks to Kim for proclaiming “unwavering faith in President Trump.” It is not clear whether Kim used those words or if Trump is merely paraphrasing.
Kim Jong Un of North Korea proclaims “unwavering faith in President Trump.” Thank you to Chairman Kim. We will get it done together!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 6, 2018
What about the U.N. report?
This new information contradicts a United Nations report from late August, which determined that North Korea was still actively developing its nuclear weapons program. The report largely based its conclusion on satellite photos, since the North Korean government has refused to let international inspectors examine its nuclear sites.
On Thursday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said, “We haven’t had any nuclear tests, we haven’t had any missile tests, which we consider a good thing. But the work of convincing Chairman Kim to make the strategic shift that we’ve talked about for a brighter future for the people of North Korea continues.”
At the conclusion of their June 12 summit, Trump and Kim signed a joint declaration that stated: "President Trump committed to provide security guarantees to the DPRK, and Chairman Kim Jong Un reaffirmed his firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula."