United States Secretary of State Michael Pompeo on Tuesday abruptly postponed a meeting with a top North Korean official in NY scheduled for Thursday, in a setback to peace talks between the two countries, AFP reported.
A senior North Korean envoy's meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has been delayed, throwing already deadlocked diplomacy over the North's nuclear weapons into further uncertainty.
She did not specify why the talks had been canceled or if they had been rescheduled, only saying, "We will reconvene when our respective schedules permit".
Pompeo had said Sunday that he would be meeting Kim Yong Chol in NY, where the two would "make sure that the summit between our two leaders can take place, where we can make substantial steps towards denuclearization".
South Korean President Moon Jae-in, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, their wives and attendants ate naengmyeon at Okryugwan after an inter-Korean summit in Pyongyang in September.
Its leader, Kim Jong Un, has spoken of his hopes for reform of North Korea's economy and has looked to examples in the region.
"I'd love to take the sanctions off, but they have to be responsive too - it's a two-way street", Trump said. But the Blue House would not reveal the reason for the postponement and referred questions to the State Department.More news: Panic over Mueller's fate after Trump sacks AG Jeff Sessions
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The meeting comes with the two sides at loggerheads almost five months after the summit, in which Trump and Kim pledged to work toward the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula.
United States and foreign sources close to the talks paint a picture that's starkly different from the image President Donald Trump sought to convey Wednesday, when he told reporters the administration is "very happy with how it's going with North Korea".
But Pompeo abruptly postponed the talks in NY. -North Korea negotiations have completely broken down or "lost their momentum" because of the postponement.
Pompeo said in an interview with CBS Sunday that he expects to make "some real progress" when he meets with his counterpart, including on the potential summit, "where we can make substantial steps towards denuclearization".
We're going to make it on another date but we're very happy with how it's going with North Korea.
Pyongyang has been pushing for a formal declaration to end the 1950-53 Korean War and replace the armistice that stopped the fighting but left the combatants still technically at war. That effort has stalled, with North Korea refusing to declare the details of its nuclear capabilities or, so far, allow worldwide inspectors into the country to verify claims that is has dismantled certain sites.
The first summit yielded a joint statement committing the North to work toward "complete denuclearization" of the Korean Peninsula in exchange for security guarantees from the U.S.