Another Kim-Trump meet?
Not much has changed since the June summit in Singapore, after the US President and his Pyongyang counterpart emerged with positive assurances. As matters stand, satellite images have shown that Pyongyang has proceeded with its nuclear experiments. But the US President has said that a second summit with North Korea's Kim Jong-un is likely to take place in January or February. "We're getting along very well," Trump said during the return trip from the G20 summit in Buenos Aires. Adding, "We have a good relationship with Kim." The next meeting will probably take place at a new location. The two countries are considering three sites for the potential summit, Trump said, but he did not offer details about where those sites could be. When asked if Kim would come to the US for a visit apart from the second summit, Trump said "at some point" he would. The President's comments came hours after Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping held a working meeting in Argentina, discussing several issues that included a temporary freeze on higher tariffs and the North Korean peninsula. "It was also agreed that great progress has been made with respect to North Korea and that President Trump, together with President Xi, will strive, along with Chairman Kim Jong-un, to see a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula," the White House said in a statement following the highly anticipated dinner in Argentina. President Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have publicly discussed a possible second meeting with Kim multiple times but talks with North Korean officials appear to have been stalled. Two of Pompeo's trips to Pyongyang were cancelled. Washington and Pyongyang were locked in a diplomatic standoff for weeks over which side will make concessions first until US officials relaxed their demands. Last month, Vice President Mike Pence said that the US will not require North Korea to provide a full list of its nuclear and missile sites before Trump meets Kim again. Rather than requiring a declaration of nuclear weapons sites as a prerequisite to a second meeting with Trump, Pence said that the administration will insist on developing a "verifiable plan" to disclose those sites while the two leaders are in the same room. Pence's comments followed the release of new commercial satellite images identifying more than a dozen undeclared North Korean missile operating bases, another sign that Pyongyang is continuing to move forward with its ballistic missile programme. That assessment was not a surprise to American intelligence agencies which have long assessed that the North Koreans have stored much of their weapons capability, including mobile missile launchers, in underground mountain bunkers. Only after economic sanctions are relaxed will Pyongyang act as Washington wishes it to.