Pompeo: No sanctions relief for North Korea until complete denuclearization

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has said there will be no sanctions relief for North Korea while it maintains nucle...

Posted: Jun 14, 2018 10:59 PM
Updated: Jun 14, 2018 10:59 PM

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has said there will be no sanctions relief for North Korea while it maintains nuclear weapons, contradicting North Korean state media who said it could take place "as progress is made."

Pompeo made the statement during a news conference with the South Korean and Japanese foreign ministers in Seoul Thursday, 24 hours after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un touched down in Pyongyang, triumphant after his meeting with US President Donald Trump.

North Korean state media KCNA reported Wednesday that Trump had discussed lifting sanctions against Pyongyang during his talks with Kim in Singapore.

"The President of the US expressed the possibility of suspending the US - South Korea joint military exercises ... and, as progress is made from dialogue and negotiations, lifting sanctions against DPRK," state media said.

But Pompeo said Thursday that Trump had been very clear there would only be sanctions relief after "complete denuclearization."

"He has said this from the very beginning, he said it again to Chairman Kim and he said it in his press conference following his meeting with Chairman Kim," he told reporters.

Pompeo is on a tour of East Asia visiting with US allies and diplomatic partners to brief them on Trump's talks. From South Korea, he'll fly to China for meetings with top officials in Beijing later Thursday.

Canceling drills requires 'consultations': South Korea

The Trump administration is expected to announce as soon as Thursday the formal suspension of planning for major multilateral military drills in August, US officials told CNN.

Trump made the surprise announcement that military drills would be called off during a news conference after his summit with Kim on Tuesday.

However speaking opposite Secretary Pompeo on Thursday, South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha said decisions to suspend the exercises would "require consultations."

"This is an issue that involves the Korea-US alliance and this requires consultations between the military authorities of the two countries the Korea and the United States and it will be the case in the future as well," she told reporters.

It echoed comments made after Trump's Tuesday announcement, when South Korea's presidential office said they needed "to figure out president Trump's accurate meaning and intention."

Pompeo also met with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Thursday, who again described the Trump-Kim summit as "very successful."

"There are various opinions about the meeting, but the most important thing is that the talks have made it possible for people around the world, including the people of the US, SK and Japan, to escape the threats of war, nuclear threats and the threats of long range missiles," Moon said in a statement.

Xi pushed Trump to suspend drills, source says

Following his talks with Japan and South Korea, Pompeo will head to Beijing to brief the Chinese government on Trump's meeting with Kim. He's due to meet with Foreign Minister Wang Yi before talks with President Xi Jinping at 9 p.m. local time (9 a.m. ET).

A source familiar with the matter told CNN the idea to suspend military exercises with South Korea had been heavily pushed by President Xi in the lead up to the Singapore summit.

The source added Xi had multiple direct conversations with Trump about the topic before the US President met with Kim.

Experts said the decision to postpone the drills was a win for Beijing, who have long sought a way to drive a wedge between the US and its East Asian allies.

Currently there are around 28,000 American troops in South Korea, as well as another 49,000 in Japan.

"If they end these exercises then people in South Korea will begin to question why are US troops even there?" Bonnie Glaser, director of the China Power Project at CSIS, told CNN.

But both the Japanese and South Korean foreign ministers were firm in their statements on Thursday that the US alliance was strong and US troops were there to stay.

"Secretary Pompeo and I reaffirm that the South Korean US alliance ... is robust as ever, that the US forces in Korea has played and will continue to play a crucial role for deterrence and peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula," Kang said.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 450762

Reported Deaths: 6079
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin935111486
Ramsey40220742
Dakota33243348
Anoka31118366
Washington20282231
Stearns17957188
St. Louis13777244
Scott1203597
Wright11688106
Olmsted1062075
Sherburne823966
Carver698338
Clay654681
Rice613969
Kandiyohi555772
Blue Earth544833
Crow Wing486877
Otter Tail459367
Chisago455036
Benton421587
Winona391948
Douglas376666
Nobles372446
Mower369429
Goodhue351259
Polk330059
McLeod326546
Beltrami313248
Morrison312945
Lyon303338
Becker286939
Itasca285943
Isanti283241
Carlton282243
Steele275810
Pine267814
Freeborn249523
Todd232530
Nicollet226437
Brown215834
Mille Lacs214745
Le Sueur211716
Cass208424
Meeker200633
Waseca190716
Wabasha17293
Martin171326
Roseau166117
Hubbard149938
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Renville137840
Dodge13624
Chippewa131732
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Fillmore12535
Wadena120417
Rock110612
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Faribault107416
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Pennington100315
Kanabec98018
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Murray8995
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Swift83818
Pope7425
Marshall70315
Stevens7038
Clearwater68614
Lac qui Parle65716
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Wilkin6299
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Lincoln4892
Big Stone4663
Unassigned43968
Grant4298
Norman4248
Mahnomen4137
Kittson37220
Red Lake3184
Traverse2553
Lake of the Woods1951
Cook1150

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 308737

Reported Deaths: 4391
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk46313460
Linn17916278
Scott15694167
Black Hawk13964242
Woodbury13064179
Johnson1220051
Dubuque11504157
Pottawattamie9086114
Dallas901872
Story875536
Webster470677
Cerro Gordo469972
Sioux458757
Clinton455065
Warren452039
Marshall429262
Buena Vista395230
Muscatine393078
Des Moines389243
Plymouth352269
Wapello347598
Jasper328559
Lee321132
Marion307252
Jones272949
Henry265831
Carroll257434
Bremer248048
Crawford233124
Washington221333
Boone221017
Benton210950
Mahaska196337
Jackson193931
Tama189559
Dickinson188129
Kossuth177744
Delaware174736
Clay170721
Wright166024
Fayette164123
Buchanan161023
Hamilton161030
Winneshiek159120
Harrison157362
Hardin156130
Cedar154419
Clayton153049
Butler149824
Page145415
Floyd140536
Cherokee139527
Mills138016
Lyon137033
Poweshiek134124
Hancock130824
Allamakee130029
Iowa126722
Calhoun12309
Grundy121927
Jefferson121625
Madison12169
Winnebago120829
Mitchell116436
Louisa115530
Cass114743
Chickasaw113312
Appanoose111540
Emmet111232
Sac111215
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Shelby104027
Guthrie103624
Franklin103118
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Palo Alto91411
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Howard84819
Monroe81419
Clarke8017
Pocahontas77811
Ida75430
Davis69721
Greene6977
Adair69320
Lucas6619
Monona65017
Osceola64510
Worth6154
Taylor5969
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Van Buren49914
Decatur4944
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