China mum about whether Xi will meet Trump, Kim in Singapore

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The US secretary of state has said the United States is willing to help North Korea with its economy if it gets rid of its nuclear weapons.

The Trump-Kim summit is scheduled to take place on June 12 in Singapore. A glance at past North Korean behavior patterns should temper Trump's expectations.

Ironically, Mr Trump is likely to pursue the same kind of narrow strategy with Pyongyang that former president Barack Obama did with Tehran. Beyond that, he is generally guided by a sense of indignation against his predecessors, especially President Barack Obama, for having been too gullible or unfocused to solve the problem at hand.

In 2015, Singapore hosted a historic meeting between Chinese president Xi Jinping and Taiwan's then-leader Ma Ying-jeou, the first between presidents of the two sides since a 1949 civil war split that led to decades of estrangement.

On September 21, 2017, Washington unveils a raft of tough sanctions to curb North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile programme.

At a party meeting last month when Kim proclaimed the development of the North's nuclear force complete and promised no more nuclear or missile tests, he called its arsenal "a powerful treasured sword for defending peace". "And we must continue to work toward religious freedoms for the estimated 300,000 North Korean Christians who must practice their faith under threat of harassment, imprisonment and even death", urged David Curry, president and CEO of Open Doors USA.

North Korea in 2014 sentenced South Korean Baptist missionary Kim Jung-wook to hard labor for life on charges of spying and trying to set up underground churches. I also understand why he might want to signal officials in neighboring China that if they are not more forthcoming with money, technology and other goodies, North Korea has another suitor knocking at the door.

The treatment of Iran, after painstakingly negotiating a deal with the major powers and abiding by it, can only entrench Kim's resolve to hold on tight to his insurance policy.

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"The United States and the Republic of Korea remain committed to achieving the permanent, verifiable, and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean peninsula", Pompeo told reporters on Friday. But he will still plead for more time.

The North said it plans to invite journalists from the United States, South Korea, China, Russia and Britain to inspect the process. As well, it and other members of the 1950-53 UN Command (including Canada) are still technically at war with North Korea. He will not, however, take any responsibility for the beatings Warmbier apparently endured.

As the Trump-Kim summit nears, there are several concerns.

Located just over 3,000 miles (4,800 kilometres) from North Korea, Singapore is comfortably within the flying range of its aircraft.

For now, scoring a diplomatic win with Pyongyang has become Trump's top focus. One possibility is that he will confront Kim on North Korea's fluid definition of "denuclearization". "Certainly the best outcome would be an agreement for complete and total denuclearization". "South Korean diplomacy has turned fire and fury into summits and stability", Oba told VOA, referring to Trump's previously tough talks against Pyongyang. The two leaders will jointly prepare for the U.S.

Moreover, he will need to keep all alternatives on the table, even though military options are becoming less tenable in the context of inter-Korean dialogue.

Anyone can make a bad deal - look at the one President Obama made with Iran.

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