Published: Sat, February 09, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Vietnam vows to make Trump-Kim summit a success

Vietnam vows to make Trump-Kim summit a success

Following what he called a "productive meeting" between a top US envoy and Pyongyang, Trump tweeted Friday evening that a time and date for a second summit have been "agreed upon". Biegun met with South Korean officials before moving along to the North on Wednesday to lay the groundwork for a summit in Vietnam on February 27 and 28.

The US envoy was also likely to have discussed with his counterpart protocol and security matters for the upcoming Trump-Kim summit. Some experts say North Korea is trying to use the negotiations to weaken the sanctions and buy time to flawless its weapons program.

Communist-ruled Vietnam, which has good relations with both the United States and North Korea, has been keen to host the second summit as a demonstration of its normalization of ties with the United States since the Vietnam War, which ended in 1975 and killed more than 58,000 Americans and an estimated three million Vietnamese.

The first ever US-North Korean summit was held in Singapore in June.

Biegun is expected to share details of his Pyongyang meetings with his South Korean counterpart Lee Do-hoon and Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha on Saturday.

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Trump, eager for a foreign policy win to distract from the ongoing Russian Federation probe and other investigations, had been pushing for a second summit despite the lack of progress on the denuclearization front. Mr Kim pledged then to work toward the "complete denuclearisation" of the Korean Peninsula, without providing a clear timetable or roadmap.

Trump announced the plan for his second meeting with Kim in his annual State of the Union address on Tuesday.

A year of mostly fruitless diplomacy has led to serious doubts about Mr. Kim's sincerity and Trump's ability to force North Korea to significantly reduce the threat its nuclear weapons pose to the region and world.

The Yomiuri ShimbunWill the United States and North Korea be able to bridge differences in their respective standpoints over the North's denuclearization this time around? The North on the other hand, has been demanding the remove its economic sanctions on the regime.

On Thursday, Trump's special envoy for North Korea, Stephen Biegun, held a second day of talks with officials in Pyongyang, North Korea's capital, to hammer out summit logistics and an agenda. He may surprise some but he won't surprise me, because I have gotten to know him & fully understand how capable he is.

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