Officials from the Trump Administration are feeling optimistic about the Singapore Summit with the President and North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un. They are so optimistic in fact that there are rumors of a “Round Two” Trump-Kim meeting that will be held in New York in September, just as the world’s leaders come to the Big Apple for the United Nations General Assembly.
According to a report from Axios says that Kim would have to show progress on the deal with President Trump for such a meeting to take place in his hometown of New York. This was stated despite the fact that intelligence photos show that military infrastructure in the North is still being built near the sites where nuclear testing took place, causing those in the intelligence community to ditch the executive branch optimism and stick to seeing the North as a threat.
Round Two could possibly be a way to spur the North Korean leader to stay true to the deal of ceasing nuclear operations in his country and allow outsiders to inspect the nuclear sites.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is set to visit Pyongyang this week to push for denuclearization, after he has secured the return of remains of U.S. soldiers killed during the Korean War, a sign of good faith from the North.
Trump was recently asked by Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo about what to expect with North Korea in revealing the specifics of its facilities within the next several weeks. The President said, “This has been going on for many years…I think they’re very serious about it. I think they want to do it. We have a very good chemistry.”
Nevertheless, National Security Adviser John Bolton, who has a hawkish view of the Kim regime, cautions the feeling of optimism. “We’re very well aware of North Korea’s patterns of behavior over decades of negotiating with the United States…[T]here’s not any starry eyed feeling among the group doing this,” he said on CBS’s “Face the Nation.”
Kim’s past declarations of moving towards denuclearization have been highly suspect. So, the leader’s real intentions will be debatable until he formally reveals his arsenal and capabilities.
Later this week, Pompeo must create a path towards getting inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) back into the country to inspect sites and create a program to ensure the full denuclearization of the county.