US, Kim ‘take new step forward’ in fresh meeting

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said he and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un discussed denuclearisation steps to be taken by the North

South Korean President Moon Jae-in said that Kim is expected to visit Russian Federation soon and that Chinese leader Xi Jinping will also travel to North Korea, but did not give any further details.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Monday that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is ready to allow worldwide inspectors into a key nuclear testing site, signaling a step forward in Pyongyang's commitment to denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula.

Mr Pompeo and Mr Kim did not meet on that occasion but did this time, and were filmed smiling warmly in what appeared to be a convivial atmosphere.

Pompeo said "he agreed with Chairman Kim to hold the second US-North Korea summit at the earliest date possible", South Korea's presidential office said in a statement, although no specific time or location has yet been agreed.

In a statement, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said Kim had invited inspectors to visit the Punggye-Ri test site in order to confirm that it had been dismantled.

"Kim Jong Un expressed satisfaction over the productive and wonderful talks with Mike Pompeo at which mutual stands were fully understood and opinions exchanged", KCNA said.

Moon said a second Mr. Trump-Kim summit could be accompanied by major diplomatic developments that could contribute to the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and stabilizing peace.

The KCNA said that Kim also expressed "will" and "conviction" to make progress on issues of mutual concern, apparently indicating the denuclearization talks that have nearly been stalled since the June summit in Singapore.

North Korea claims to have destroyed the site.

"It's a long process", Pompeo told a small group of reporters in the South Korean capital of Seoul, where he traveled after meeting with Kim in Pyongyang on Sunday.

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Pompeo identified Punggye-ri as one of the testing sites mentioned in their conversations.

Pompeo met with Kim for three and a half hours, which included a 90-minute luncheon, and then flew to Seoul later Sunday to share the outcome with South Korean officials.

Kim told Pompeo as they sat down, "It's a very nice day that promises a good future for both countries". However, there were no plans for him to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping, which was seen as a sign of worsening relations between the two powers.

Since Trump and Kim met, US-North Korea relations have stalled.

Secretary of State Pompeo said the logistics for the second Pyeongyang-Washington summit are becoming more tangible.

The two diplomats had warmer words regarding efforts to curb North Korea's nuclear ambitions.

Last week, Vice President Mike Pence stepped up the USA pressure campaign against Beijing, going beyond the trade war by accusing China of both "malign" efforts to undermine President Donald Trump ahead of next month's congressional elections and of reckless military action in the South China Sea.

It was Pompeo's fourth trip to Pyongyang and his first visit since July, when he spent the night and left with little to show for his journey.

Moon also said there was a possibility of Kim holding a summit with Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe.

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