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Published: Wed, May 23, 2018
Economy | By Melissa Porter

S. Korea sees 99.9-pct possibility for DPRK-US summit: Blue House

S. Korea sees 99.9-pct possibility for DPRK-US summit: Blue House

It is only a small element of America's recent rapprochement with North Korea but it appeared to gain a currency all its own on social media. The report on North Korea's military capabilities was based on an assessment of developments in 2017 and was provided to Congress in April.

The first big test of where things are will come this week, when North Korea is due to destroy the Punggye-ri nuclear test site, in full view of global journalists.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in, right, is greeted by Marc Knapper, left, acting USA ambassador to Seoul, as Moon arrived at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland on Monday.

"It appears to be technically hard (for the South Korean reporters) to make a trip to the North today", a government official said.

Mr Pence said in a Fox News interview that such a move would be a "great mistake" by the North Korean leader.

A new North Korean state media commentary out Tuesday morning reads in part: "dialogue and saber-rattling can never go together" and will "chill the atmosphere" before the planned June 12 summit between President Trump and Kim Jong Un in Singapore.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in, a champion of talks between the USA and North Korea, will look to restore momentum for an unprecedented summit between the foes in a White House visit on Tuesday. This is on the country's east coast and as you can see back over here this is a massive and modern airport.

The Rodong Sinmun reporter scribbles down his personal details.

Numerous other news organisations, including Reuters, had also sought to cover the shutdown of the North's nuclear test site but were denied invitations to visit the country.

From the beginning, their interactions have been complicated by Trump's long-standing frustrations with South Korea over trade and defense issues.

"Nonetheless, the government pays due attention to the fact that the North's pledge to dismantle the Punggyeri nuclear test site, an initial measure for denuclearisation, is proceeding as planned, and expects that such action to lead to the successful hosting of the North Korea-U.S. summit", South Korea's Unification Ministry said in a statement.

The North is unhappy with the USA making it look weak and wants to make sure other issues such as human rights are not brought up during the summit, which could embarrass and undermine the North Korean regime, he said. North and South Korea are technically still at war because their 1950-53 conflict ended in a truce, not a peace treaty.

But after several Trumpian victory laps, North Korea's willingness to denuclearise is now in serious doubt.

Seoul and Washington have been holding a variety of working-level talks on dialogue with the North ahead the summit, Chung said, adding that the South and the US are working in close coordination and share "all information".

It is likely that foreign journalists excluding the South Koreans will fly to Wonsan on Tuesday on a charter plane from which they are expected to travel by train to an area near the test site.

The site, located in the mountainous region of the North, is where the North carried out all six of its nuclear denotation tests.

CNN's Tokyo bureau correspondent Will Ripley speaks to reporters at Beijing Capital International Airport.

Since then, there has been a landmark series of intra-Korean meetings, two trips to Pyongyang by Mike Pompeo - first as Central Intelligence Agency director then as America's top diplomat - and three American citizens have been released from the North.

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