Addressing the elephant in the room

Mike Pompeo meets with Kim Jong Un over Easter denuclearization discussed, history in the making

Mike Pompeo

President Trumps Secretary of State nominee Mike Pompeo met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un over Easter and Denuclearization was discussed. The President confirmed the meeting on Wednesday saying ” a good relationship was formed” this prior to the two leaders highly anticipated meeting.

Trump disclosed on Tuesday that discussions with North Korea were happening at “extremely high levels”  in preparation for a possible summit.  Five locations are under consideration for the meeting, which could take place by early June.

The Washington Post first reported on the meeting over Easter weekend, shortly after Mike Pompeo was nominated for Secretary of State.

Kim’s offer for a summit was initially conveyed to Trump by South Korea last month, and the president shocked many by accepting it. U.S. officials indicated over the past two weeks that North Korea’s government had communicated directly with Washington that it was ready to discuss its nuclear weapons program.

It would be the first-ever summit between the U.S. and North Korea during more than six decades of hostility since the Korean War. North Korea’s nuclear weapons and its capability to deliver them by ballistic missile pose a growing threat to the U.S. mainland.

The U.S. and North Korea do not have formal diplomatic relations, complicating the arrangements for contacts between the two governments. It is not unprecedented for U.S. intelligence officials to serve as a conduit for communication with Pyongyang.

Pompeo is in the midst of confirmation with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and was asked about a possible meeting with Kim last week.

“I’m optimistic that the United States government can set the conditions for that appropriately so that the president and the North Korean leader can have that conversation and will set us down the course of achieving a diplomatic outcome that America and the world so desperately need,” Pompeo told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

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