Korea economically if it gets rid of nuclear weapons

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Speaking to reporters, Pompeo said the U.S. would be "prepared to work with North Korea to achieve prosperity on the par with our South Korean friends".

Three Korean-Americans who were detained in North Korea for more than a year were greeted by President Donald Trump beneath a giant American flag after they returned to the mainland US early Thursday.

"I think there is complete agreement about what the ultimate objectives are", Pompeo said, though he declined to offer more detail. Rodong Sinmun, the official newspaper of the Workers' Party of Korea's Central Committee, accused the U.S.in a commentary Wednesday of holding on to a "Cold War way of thinking" and being "rude", according to the state-run Korean Central News Agency.

Japan's prime minister on Friday warned North Korean leader Kim Jong Un that Japan will not provide major economic assistance unless the North resolves the issue of Japanese citizens it abducted decades ago.

Pompeo is holding a joint news conference with South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha.

In North Korea's bombastic rhetoric, "denuclearization" has, for years, been a byword for United States troop withdrawals from South Korea.

When requested to outline what he meant by everlasting, verifiable denuclearization, Pompeo stated, "I am unsure methods to outline it absolutely, it is fairly clear what which means ... how to make sure North Korea does not possess the capability to threaten the world".

Trump has credited a U.S.

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But despite the optimism of that moment, all efforts to limit North Korea's nuclear program have, to date, failed.

A series of USA administrations have sent envoys, both official and unofficial, to Pyongyang in the hope of stopping North Korea's nuclear weapons program. The ceremony, which also featured a giant American flag suspended between the ladders of two firetrucks, emphasized Trump's penchant for the dramatic as he raised expectations for the summit.

Kim had revealed plans to shut down the country's northeastern testing ground by the end of May during his summit with South Korean President Moon Jae-in last month. Cory Gardner of Colorado, who was among several Republican lawmakers who dined with Trump and National Security Adviser John Bolton Wednesday evening before the detainees returned, said their release was a positive development, but he remained cautious about North Korea's intentions.

Pressed in a separate interview on whether the US would seek regime change, Pompeo said "only time will tell how these negotiations will proceed".

Japan says North Korea abducted at least 17 Japanese citizens in the 1970s and 1980s to train agents in Japanese culture and language to spy on South Korea. They expressed their appreciation to Trump, Pompeo and the people of the United States and added: "We thank God, and all our families and friends who prayed for us and for our return".

However, experts told VOA there is a gap between the United States and North Korea regarding the steps toward denuclearization, with North Korea continues to press for a phased and incremental approach.

After her talks with Pompeo, she took pains to "emphasize again that the US military presence in Korea is a matter for the ROK-US alliance first and foremost".

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