Nuclear North Korea: No One Knows What to Expect, Says Expert
Jul 06 2018
At one point, he explicitly threatened to unleash "fire and fury like the world has never seen" in response to North Korean aggression. The short joint statement did not define how that would be achieved or say when the process would begin or how long it might take.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will return to North Korea on July 5 to meet with Kim and his team, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters at Monday's press briefing.
The country has reportedly upgraded facilities around reactors at the Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center and, according to US intelligence leaks, maintained the operation of secret uranium enrichment sites while continuing to manufacture Transporter Erector Launchers for medium-range missiles.
However, some experts disputed Bolton's optimistic time frame for decommissioning North Korea's weapons, even if North Korea were willing to agree to such moves, amid multiple reportssuggesting otherwise.
This comes on top of a Washington Post report that USA intelligence believes the North Koreans are planning to hide the number of warheads in their arsenal.
Less than three weeks ago, at their summit in Singapore, Kim took home a United States concession to stop its war games with South Korea, the prestige that comes with sharing the stage with the leader of the world's most powerful nation, and now the total collapse of sanctions, or at least China's participation in them.
USA officials have since been trying to flesh out details to produce an agreement that might live up to Trump's enthusiastic portrayal of the outcome. The official was not authorized to comment publicly on the matter and requested anonymity.
A team of U.S. officials led by envoy Sung Kim met with North Korean officials Sunday at Panmunjom, the border village between North and South Korea in the demilitarized zone, senior State Department officials told CNN. "Physically we would be able to dismantle the overwhelming bulk of their programmes within a year".
Details were scant, but Bolton said it would see North Korea's nuclear, biological, and chemical arsenals totally wiped out, along with its entire ballistic missile program.
"I think they're very serious about it", he said. Collins stressed the need for "verifiable, unimpeded, reliable inspections" of the North's weapons programs.
Harry Kazianis, Executive Editor of The National Interest and Director of Defense Studies at the Center for the National Interest, says it seems the North Koreans "don't have any intention of denuclearizing".
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is working to firm up those commitments in the wake of the summit, with the Financial Times reporting that he plans to soon visit Pyongyang.
Ahead of a new round of high-level denuclearization talks with North Korea, President Trump rebuked critics of the negotiations and declared Tuesday that he had already avoided war with the Communist regime. Have I been in deals, have you been in things where, people didn't work out? I shook hands with him. "So we obviously have a whole lot to talk about".