North Korea will never fully give up nuclear weapons, says top defector

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That visit came to mind when President Trump recently announced that he will meet North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on June 12 in Singapore.

"The United States and the Republic of Korea are committed to achieving the permanent, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula", Pompeo said during the joint press conference.

Nauert, also appearing on Fox News' "Fox and Friends", traveled to North Korea with Pompeo for the prisoner release and recalled when they boarded the plane to return home.

The allure of economic help could be enough for Kim to accept terms to denuclearize, as Pompeo said that there's a chance that North Korea and the USA could become "partners", according to the Los Angeles Times.

North Korea's development of nuclear weapons and missiles capable of reaching the United States brought exchanges of bellicose rhetoric between Trump and Kim a year ago that raised fears of a new war on the Korean peninsula.

"I think there is complete agreement about what the ultimate objectives are", he explained.

"We're not talking about sanctions relief at this point", she said.

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Pompeo also said the complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula would require "robust verification" program by the United States and other countries.

POMPEO: We talked about the fact that America has often in history had adversaries who we are now close partners with and our hope that we could achieve the same with respect to North Korea.

Kim said that he wants an end to the USA -led restrictions, which ban 90 percent of North Korea's trade exports. It would be a complete denuclearization with a robust verification program. The majority of people in North Korea live in poverty.

"We are interested in how much of our culture North Korean people know about", Do Jong-hwan, South Korea's minister of culture, sports and tourism, told ABC News, hinting that plans for plenty of cultural exchanges may already be in the works. They say the word "denuclearization" means something very different to Kim and to Trump.

But both Washington and Seoul - longtime treaty allies - cooperate closely and also confer with the North's larger neighbor China, which has a stake in the outcome. Last week, US intelligence said the North Koreans had started pulling cables from the tunnels at their nuclear test site - a first step toward closing them.

Another scenario has Kim seeking a deal where he gives away his ICBMs but retains some of his shorter-range arsenal in return for a reduced US military presence in the South. But he said he thinks Kim has a good understanding of what the US means by all of that. Such a plan would shield Pyongyang from future USA military threats. "We had said to them all along that is something we would want".

While Singapore's tight control over political activities and media has drawn criticism, it's also what makes the country an ideal location for a high-security event like the Trump-Kim summit.

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