'Kim Jong Un' poses for selfies in Singapore ahead of Trump summit

US officials travel to North Korea to prepare for summit despite uncertainty

Another way for the United States and its allies to increase pressure on North Korea could be to step up efforts to intercept ships suspected of violating worldwide trade restrictions on Pyongyang.

The U.S. team preparing for the talks traveled Sunday to Tongilgak, or "Unification House", the building where Kim met Moon on Saturday for impromptu talks aimed at salvaging the summit.

The back-and-forth has only gotten more complicated in the days since.

Putin is incorrect about the North Koreans keeping their promises.

Trump cited hostile comments from top North Korean officials as his reason for scrapping the meeting, as well as concern about the country's commitment to giving up its nuclear weapons.

The French President was unsuccessful in persuading Trump to stick with the Iran nuclear deal during an official visit to the U.S. last month.

"China is already de-coupling", said Lee Seong-hyon, research fellow at South Korea's Sejong Institute think tank. North's state media called it a "North invasion uproar".

American officials are skeptical that Kim will ever fully abandon his nuclear arsenal, and Moon said North Korea is not yet convinced it can trust security guarantees from the United States.

Kim is also joined by Allison Hooker, the Korea specialist on the National Security Council, and an official from the Defense Department.

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"We simply couldn't get them to pick up the phone", a White House senior official told reporters Thursday. "South Korea summit, President Trump clearly emphasized that we may see not only the end of hostile relations but also economic cooperation if North Korea denuclearize", Moon said.

Moon and Kim held a surprise summit meeting on the North's side of Panmunjeom on Saturday, on the request of Kim.

"This is my normal body", he said, when asked if he had to put on weight to impersonate the North's leader.

"We are having very productive talks with North Korea about reinstating the Summit which, if it does happen, will likely remain in Singapore on the same date, June 12th., and, if necessary, will be extended beyond that date", Trump said in a tweet on Friday.

May 24: North Korea goes through with destroying its nuclear testing facility at Punggye-ri as promised. In his official signed letter he says, "Based on the tremendous anger and open hostility displayed in your most recent statement, I feel it is inappropriate, at this time, to have this long-planned meeting".

"We're doing very well in terms of the summit with North Korea", Trump said at the White House.

Kim Chang Son was in Beijing from Thursday to Saturday, according to Japanese and South Korean media reports, although it was not clear whether his trip was related to the summit preparations.

In his letter, Trump responded, referencing US nuclear capabilities "so massive and powerful that I pray to God they will never have to be used". So we're looking at June 12th in Singapore.

Koh Yu-hwan, a North Korea expert at Seoul's Dongguk University and a policy adviser to Moon, said the South Korean president wants Kim to accept an alternative approach advocated by Seoul, in which the North's comprehensive commitment and credible actions toward denuclearization are followed by a phased but compressed process of declaration, inspection and verifiable dismantling.

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