Kim summit preparations intensify

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The Trump administration is believed to have granted him a temporary waiver this time to allow him to NY, where North Korea has a diplomatic mission to the United Nations.

The president added, "It will happen!" though his exact meaning was not clear. Trump will meet its Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Washington on June 7, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said.

While in the United States, South Korean media say Kim Yong Chol will likely meet Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who visited Pyongyang, North Korea's capital, twice recently, to finalize plans for the North Korea-U.S. summit.

The weekend talks were the latest twist in a week of diplomatic ups and downs over the prospects for an unprecedented U.S.

Kim held two meetings with Xi in March and May in China and two others with South Korean President Moon Jae In in Panmunjeom in April and May.

The North denied both incidents.

"(Moon) could join President Trump and (North Korean leader) Kim (Jong Un) in Singapore", a senior official with Moon's office told Yonhap news agency on condition of anonymity.

In Singapore, a large advance team led by deputy White House chief of staff Joe Hagin arrived late Monday to begin logistical preparations for a summit.

Mr Kim, in a telling line from a dispatch issued by the North's state-run news service earlier on Sunday, "expressed his fixed will on the historic (North Korea)-US summit talks".

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A team of American diplomats involved in preparatory discussions left a Seoul hotel, possibly to continue talks with their North Korean counterparts.

Moon said Sunday, May 27, that Kim committed in the rivals' surprise meeting to sitting down with President Donald Trump and to a "complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula". Jo said that improved relations "will be good for both countries and for peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and the Northeast Asian region as well". Moon said Sunday that the North's disarmament could be still be a hard process even if Pyongyang, Washington and Seoul don't differ over what "complete denuclearization" of the peninsula means.

The North had tested missiles believed to be capable of reaching the United States, but Trump has vowed not to let Pyongyang develop one that could deliver a nuclear warhead. But moving beyond several footsteps into the North at Panmunjom would be rare for USA officials.

It allowed Mr Moon to push for a US-North Korean summit that he sees as the best way to ease animosity that had some fearing a war past year. There's also speculation that American officials are trying to persuade the North Koreans to export a certain number of its nuclear warheads overseas at an early stage as proof of its commitment to denuclearize.

Kim's trip to the United States starts the most important negotiating track leading up to the summit meeting. Pyongyang in turn threatened the US with nuclear annihilation if Trump did not come to the negotiating table.

South Korean media also reported that a North Korean delegation arrived in Singapore on Monday night, where other USA officials, led by White House deputy chief of staff Joe Hagin, are preparing for the summit. Ministry spokesman Noh Kyu-duk also did not say whether Seoul knew of any US plans regarding Kim Yong Chol's visit, such as whether he and Pompeo would meet.

"Our United States team has arrived in North Korea to make arrangements for the Summit between Kim Jong Un and myself", Mr Trump tweeted.

President Trump ratcheted up his pressure on the Hermit Kingdom last week, saying he planned on canceling the meeting after Kim's team failed to meet with United States negotiators to finalize plans.

But analysts say North Korea will be unwilling to cede its nuclear deterrent unless it is given security guarantees that the U.S. will not try to topple the regime.