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Trump, Kim agree on denuclearization, but deal seen symbolic

12 June 2018 - 62   - 0

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un pledged on Tuesday to work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula while Washington committed to provide security guarantees for its old enemy.

The joint statement signed at the end of their historic summit in Singapore gave few details on how either goal would be achieved but Trump fleshed out some details at a news conference.

“President Trump committed to provide security guarantees to the DPRK and Chairman Kim Jong Un reaffirmed his firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula,” said the statement.

DPRK is the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the formal name of North Korea.

Trump said he expected the denuclearization process to start “very, very quickly”. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and North Korean officials would hold follow-up negotiations “at the earliest possible date”, the statement said.

Trump told the news conference that the process would be verified, and that the verification “will involve having a lot of people in North Korea”.

He also said Kim had told him North Korea was destroying a major engine-testing site used for missiles, but maintained international sanctions on Pyongyang would stay in place for now.

Trump said joint military exercises with South Korea would be halted. He said the move would save Washington a tremendous amount of money and would not be revived “unless and until we see the future negotiation is not going along like it should”.

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