U.S. makes announcement after top North Korean official’s visit; decision on location to be made soon
U.S. President Donald Trump will meet for the second time with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un around the end of February, the White House said on Friday, after a top general from Pyongyang paid a rare visit to Washington. The announcement was welcomed by South Korea. Vice-Chairman Kim Yong-chol, a right-hand man to Mr. Kim, met Mr. Trump at the White House for an unusually long 90 minutes as the countries seek a denuclearisation accord that could ease decades of hostility. Critics say that the Singapore summit was little more than a photo-op. The second round with the young and elusive North Korean leader will again offer a change of headlines for Mr. Trump amid a barrage of scandalous allegations and a political deadlock that has shut down the U.S. government. While no decision has been made on location, a Vietnamese government source said that “logistical preparations” were under way to host the summit, most likely in the capital Hanoi or coastal city of Danang. Vietnam’s cooperation with the United States has been growing for years as Hanoi sets aside memories of war. Meanwhile, South Korea has welcomed the planned summit, saying that it hoped the meeting would be a “turning point” for peace on the Korean peninsula. The announcement from Seoul’s presidential office came hours after the White House announcement. “We expect the planned North-U.S. summit would be a turning point in establishing a permanent peace regimen on the Korean peninsula,” said Kim Eui-kyeom, South Korean President Moon Jae-in’s spokesman. He added Seoul would expand dialogue with Pyongyang to make the planned summit “successful”.