Published: Mon, February 18, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

North Korea, China ice dance to the music of diplomacy

North Korea, China ice dance to the music of diplomacy

WASHINGTON-Ahead of his second summit with North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un later this month in Vietnam, President Donald Trump voiced optimism, saying that the meeting would "be a very successful one".

While tensions have eased, North Korea has not relaxed its nuclear posture and has taken no major steps to scale back or dismantle its nuclear infrastructure or program, according to U.S. intelligence and the International Atomic Energy Agency, the United Nations nuclear watchdog. "If I had not been elected president of the United States, we would right now, in my opinion, be in a major war with North Korea", he said in February.

The uncertainty is raising concerns both in and out of the administration that Trump, in his second attempt to reach a historic diplomatic breakthrough with Kim, will agree to a headline-grabbing peace declaration and offer other United States concessions without locking in significant commitments from Pyongyang.

The four skaters - Ryom Tae-ok and Kim Ju-sik of North Korea, who qualified for last year's Winter Olympics, and Sui Wenjing and Han Cong, who took the ice dance silver in Pyeongchang - were the star attractions of the pageant.

He had also accompanied Kim Jong-un to the Singapore summit.

Critics argue that there is no sign of progress toward the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, a major goal set in Singapore summit a year ago.

"He may surprise some but he won't surprise me, because I have gotten to know him & fully understand how capable he is", said Trump. Eliminating Pyongyang's secret nuclear weapons capabilities and long-range ballistic missile programmes would require hundreds of worldwide nuclear inspectors to help dismantle warheads, shut down enrichment and production facilities, interview North Korean scientists, unravel procurement systems, and tag and monitor bomb-making equipment, experts say.

A Super Snow Moon Is Almost Here, so Set Your Alarms
A supermoon occurs when the moon's orbit is closest ( perigee ) to the Earth at the same time it is full, according to NASA . The next full moon will be on March 20, and while it is also going to be a "supermoon" it won't be quite as big as this one.

The US and North Korea are seriously considering exchanging liaison officers, a move that could begin the establishment of interest sections in each other's countries, two sources with knowledge of the discussions told CNN.

Trump said North Korea had tremendous potential as an economic force.

But contact was resumed after Kim said he was willing to meet Trump "at any time" during the same speech, South Korea's ambassador to the United States, Cho Yoon-je last month.

"Family members of abductees simply aspire to live in peace with those abducted by North Korea, and the Sukuu Kai will continually press the Japanese government to realize the goal". Trump past year pulled out of 2015 Iran nuclear accord that included many of those provisions, saying it was inadequate.

"It's a bit different than the fear of the Soviet Union having nuclear weapons", he said, adding that North Korea was not a significant threat to the United States.

The DPRK also asked ICAO for access to USA -produced aeronautical charts, they said.

Japan has also been informed that Tatsumitsu Kaneda, who used to work with Tanaka at the same noodle shop in Kobe and disappeared at age 26, is also living in North Korea with his wife and children, according to the official. At the time, the USA even went so far as to sign a lease for space in the German mission.

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