WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the United States and North Korea (all times local):
The anti-nuclear weapons group that won last year’s Nobel Peace Prize says it’s “very supportive” of a summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, after months of risky tensions between them.
Executive director Beatrice Fihn of ICAN says that mutual threats between the two leaders have made the risk of nuclear confrontation “really dangerously high.”
Speaking to reporters, Fihn said that if the summit in late May or early June makes progress on disarmament, “we’ll definitely applaud it … every step forward is positive.”
Overall, she reiterated ICAN’s support for a nuclear weapons ban treaty, saying, “It’s hard to see the world being able to solve one nuclear-armed state at this point in isolation from the other states.”
A U.S. ambassador says his country is maintaining a “maximum pressure campaign” to convince North Korea to denuclearize even as Washington prepares a summit between President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un.
Robert Wood is the top U.S. envoy to the U.N.-hosted Conference on Disarmament. Wood says the U.S. believes the ongoing pressure campaign “has had an important impact in the North’s decision to return to the table.”
At a news conference Thursday ahead of a meeting next week on nuclear nonproliferation, Wood said the U.S. welcomed Pyongyang’s willingness to talk about denuclearization. He called the summit planned for late May or early June a “momentous time.”
Asked by a reporter, Wood said he has received “absolutely no instructions” about possibly easing the pressure on Pyongyang so as not to scuttle the summit.
President Donald Trump says a meeting with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un is not a sure thing.
He says he could still pull out of a meeting if he feels it’s “not going to be fruitful.”
Trump says a summit with Kim could take place by early June, although the venue has yet to be decided.
It would be the first such leadership summit between the two nations after six decades of hostility following the Korean War.
CIA Director Mike Pompeo and Kim secretly met more than two weeks ago.