Japan reports to UN N.Korea's suspected smuggling

Russia says Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to visit N.Korea on May 31

Sergey Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister, was meeting with Kim Jong-un in Pyonyang today as Mike Pompeo, the US Secretary of State, sat down for talks in NY with Mr Kim's right hand man in an attempt to revive a cancelled summit between the US and North Korean leaders in Singapore next month.

Pompeo, who spoke with Trump on Wednesday night and with national security adviser John Bolton early Thursday, was accompanied by Andrew Kim, the head of a Central Intelligence Agency unit assigned to work on North Korea, and Mark Lambert, the head of the State Department's Korea desk.

Meanwhile, US State Secretary Mike Pompeo held what he characterized as "substantive talks" with a group of Pyongyang's high-ranking officials led by Kim Yong Chol, during which they discussed priorities for potential summit between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un slated for June 12.

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The DPRK has long insisted it needed nuclear weapons for security on the world stage, but journalists were invited to watch the North appear to destroy their nuclear test site on May 24.

Kim was known as a leading student activist in the 1980s who spread North Korea's Juche ideology, but later became an activist promoting democracy and human rights in North Korea.

Trump had been scheduled to meet Kim in Singapore on June 12, but the meeting was thrown into doubt after the U.S. leader said he was cancelling it. Trump had mused that Kim's "attitude" had changed after the North Korean leader's surprise visit to China two weeks ago, suggesting China was pushing Kim away from the table.

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"This clearly indicates that there will be no complete removal of nuclear capabilities", he said.

The U.S. has formally been demanding that the North, formally known as the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, or DPRK, drop its nuclear and long-range missile programs amid reports that it could hit mainland North America.

North Korean sources previously told RFA's Korean Service that citizens have been largely unmoved by, if not mistrustful of, state propaganda heralding Kim's diplomatic achievements in the nuclear-armed, sanctions-hit state.

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Russian Federation has forcefully injected itself into the fraught diplomatic dance around North Korea's nuclear weapons programme, demanding the global community lift sanctions on Pyongyang before it even begins to dismantle its arsenal. Translated by Leejin Jun.

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