USA envoy back from North Korea after talks on Trump-Kim summit

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"I look forward to seeing Chairman Kim & advancing the cause of peace!" he added.

"Special Representative Biegun and Special Representative Kim agreed to meet again in advance of President [Donald] Trump and Chairman Kim [Jong-un]'s second summit", the release said on Friday. "He may surprise some but he won't surprise me, because I have gotten to know him and fully understand how capable he is", he wrote in his post.

U.S. Special Representative for North Korea Stephen Biegun met with Kim Hyok Chol, the North's Special Representative for U.S. Affairs of the State Affairs Commission, for three days from Wednesday in the North Korean capital, the State Department said in a statement, but gave few indications of any progress in those meetings.

This is a breaking story and will be updated.

The United States sustained more than 33,000 battle deaths in the Korean War, while the number of NKoreans killed, both military and civilian, has been estimated at about 1-M.

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The president predicted North Korea could become an "Economic Powerhouse", one that becomes "a different kind of Rocket - an Economic one!"

On his return to South Korea, Mr Biegun briefed the country's Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha.

In a pair of tweets, Trump praised Kim and said his representatives had just left North Korea after a "productive meeting" on the February 27-28 summit.

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There's also speculation about a possible four-way meeting, also including Moon and Chinese President Xi Jinping, to declare a formal end to the Korean War, which stopped with an armistice and left the peninsula still technically at war. If these follow-up talks do take place, they're expected to draw up a new strategy for the Vietnam summit, based on the Pyeongyang negotiations.

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He announced details of a second meeting with North Korea's Kim Jong Un, outlining a summit on February 27 and 28 in Vietnam. Mr Trump will also address foreign policy, including support to oust Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro from power.


The Japanese Foreign Ministry will send Kenji Kanasugi, director general of its Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau, to Seoul on Friday and Saturday for talks with Stephen Biegun, U.S. special representative for North Korea, ministry sources said.

The U.S. insists on concrete denuclearization steps, such as inspections into the North's Yongbyon nuclear facility and shutting it down.

The three-year conflict ended in an armistice, not a peace treaty, leaving the two Koreas still technically at war, with the United States keeping 28,500 troops in the South. But progress has since stalled, with the two sides disagreeing over what that means.

Though President Trump subsequently tweeted that his own intelligence community was naïve and should "go back to school", the Coats assessment is the standard orthodoxy regarding the North Korean nuclear issue, and dismal progress toward denuclearization since the first Trump-Kim summit has only reinforced this view.

North Korea's state media have not commented on the plans.

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The US envoy was also likely to have discussed with his counterpart protocol and security matters for the upcoming Trump-Kim summit.

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