Still No Clarity From White House on North Korea Plan

U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez talks to reporters in the Foreign Relations Committee conference room

U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez talks to reporters in the Foreign Relations Committee conference room

That from President Donald Trump's national security adviser John Bolton on Sunday.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and South Korean Minister of Foreign Affairs Kang Kyung-wha on Friday discussed next steps following the summit.

"If they have the strategic decision already made to do that and they are cooperative, we can move very quickly", Bolton said.

It said the findings support a new, previously undisclosed Defense Intelligence Agency estimate that North Korea is unlikely to denuclearize. The Financial Times reported that Pompeo was due to visit North Korea this week but Reuters has not been able to confirm his travel plans.

The US intelligence officials have concluded that North Korea does not intend to fully surrender its nuclear stockpiles, The Washington Post reported, citing intelligence officials.

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This wasn't supposed to happen after the Donald Trump-Kim summit last month in Singapore.

Even if North Korea's promises were honest, it could take years of work, accompanied by an unprecedented agreement to grant access to outside inspectors, before U.S. officials could confidently say that the weapons threat has been neutralised.

Officials say North Korea plans to keep the U.S. in the dark about how many warheads it has, how much fissile material is in its possession and where all of its nuclear facilities are located. "And our concern about what they're doing in the 2018 election and what President Putin said through a translator of course but what he said was there was no meddling in 2016 by the Russian state".

U.S. intel agencies suspect that Pyongyang has been increasing production of nuclear fuel at multiple secret sites, NBC reported Friday.

As U.S. intelligence agencies continue to gather information about North Korea's actions, any breach of the nuclear agreement by Kim could warrant a return to the tense relationship that characterized U.S.

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Siegfried Hecker, a nuclear scientist and Stanford University professor, has predicted it would take around 10 years to dismantle and clean up a substantial part of North Korea's Yongbyon nuclear site.

North Korea expert David Albright, a former United Nations weapons inspector and president of the Institute for Science and International Security, said the assessments come at a time when "there's a worry that the Trump administration may go soft, and accept a deal that focuses on Yongbyon and forgets about these other sites". Kim and Trump both signed a document on June 12 stating that Pyongyang would work toward "complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula".

"It would be physically possible to dismantle the bulk of North Korea's programs within a year", said Thomas Countryman, the State Department's top arms control officer under President Barack Obama. President Obama said that North Korea was our biggest and most risky problem.

The North last month blew up its aged but only nuclear test site at Punggye-ri - where it had staged six atomic tests - in a show of goodwill before the summit.

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