North Korea Signs Agreement Committing to Complete Denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula
June 12, 2018
SINGAPORE — In an agreement signed Tuesday in Singapore, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un “reaffirmed his firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula,” while U.S. President Donald Trump “committed to provide security guarantees” to North Korea.
#TrumpKimSummit Signing Ceremony#SingaporeSummit pic.twitter.com/3suwNPzqQa— The Voice of America (@VOANews) June 12, 2018
The document also calls for the two countries to jointly work on efforts to build a lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula, to establish new U.S.-North Korea relations and to recover the remains of prisoners of war and military members missing in action. The two sides also promised to hold follow-up negotiations.
“We’re going to denuke North Korea,” Trump told VOA contributor Greta Van Susteren.
Trump said at later news conference that existing U.S. sanctions will remain in place for now, as will U.S. troops in the region. But he did announce one concession to North Korea, saying the U.S. would end what he called costly and “very provocative” war games with South Korea.
As for verification, Trump said he and Kim discussed the issue and that monitoring denuclearization efforts would be achieved “by having a lot of people there.” He also predicted Kim would begin work right away to “live up to” the agreement.
On human rights, Trump said Tuesday’s meetings only very briefly touched on the topic, but that the two sides would discuss it more in the future.
“I believe it’s a rough situation over there,” he said of North Korea.
He cited American college student Otto Warmbier, who was arrested by North Korean authorities in 2016 and died a year ago after being repatriated to the United States with severe brain damage.
“Otto did not die in vain, he had a lot to do with us being here today,” Trump said.
The U.S. president repeatedly struck a positive tone about Kim, thanking the North Korean leader for taking what he called a bold step and saying he “has the chance to seize an incredible future for his people.”
Hours earlier as he sat alongside Kim at the signing ceremony, Trump said the two leaders “have developed a special bond” and that after several hours of talks Tuesday and the signing of the agreement he thinks the U.S. relationship with North Korea “will be very different than in the past.”
Both Trump and Kim expressed gratitude toward each other for the meetings. Trump said he would “absolutely” invite Kim to visit the White House and is open to visiting Pyongyang as well.
“Today we had a historic meeting and decided to leave the past behind,” Kim said, speaking through a translator. “The world will see a major change.”
Trump and Kim traveled to Singapore with a main agenda of discussing the possible denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
Text of the Trump-Kim Summit Agreement https://t.co/sMdNeHD4e8 pic.twitter.com/u8DGvjfDoj— The Voice of America (@VOANews) June 12, 2018
They first met Tuesday for about 40 minutes alone, except for their translators, before bringing in delegations from their respective sides for a working lunch.They walked outside together after the lunch, stopping briefly to look at the U.S. president’s special limousine.
“We had a really fantastic meeting, a lot of progress, very positive,” Trump said.
The U.S. side included Pompeo, National Security Adviser John Bolton and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly. The North Korean participants included former military intelligence chief Kim Yong Chol, Minister of Foreign Affairs Ri Yong Ho, and Ri Su Yong, vice chairman of the ruling Workers’ Party.
Tuesday marked the first ever meeting between a sitting U.S. president and a North Korean leader. Dozens of cameras snapped photos as the two men first came together in front of a background of U.S. and North Korean flags.
One the eve of the talks, American officials maintained any resulting agreement must lead to an end of North Korea’s nuclear weapons and ballistic missile threats.
“The ultimate objective we seek from diplomacy with North Korea has not changed the complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization (CVID) of the Korea Peninsula is the only outcome that the United States will accept,” Pompeo declared Monday.
The language in Tuesday’s agreement was not as strong as the CVID standard Pompeo set out. But the secretary of state still seemed positive about the outcome.
“It’s a great day,” Pompeo told VOA.
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