United Nations rights expert urges release of 6 South Koreans held in North

President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un are planning the first face-to-face North Korea-U.S. summit since the end of the Korean War in 1953

Contrasting the wealth of South Korea to the poverty and deprivation of the North, Pompeo said the Trump administration is willing to provide assistance to North Korea if Kim meets US demands to forfeit its nuclear weapons.

Since Trump announced plans to hold a summit with Kim, questions have been raised continually about whether the two leaders have the same objective in mind when they speak about denuclearization.

Trump and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong spoke by phone a day after the U.S. president announced the date and location for his historic summit with Kim.

The Trump administration is planning a first-ever meeting between a sitting US president and a leader of North Korea for June 12 in Singapore.

"A strategic change in the director for his country and his people, and if he's prepared to do that, President Trump is prepared to assure that this can be a successful transition", he said.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has repeatedly pushed for Trump to raise the issue of repeated abductions of Japanese citizens by North Korea in his upcoming meeting with Kim Jong Un.

"If Chairman Kim chooses the right path, there is a future brimming with peace and prosperity for the North Korean people", he said. North Korea has pledged on multiple occasions to not acquire nuclear weapons, beginning with the North's accession to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty in 1985. Add North Korea as an interest to stay up to date on the latest North Korea news, video, and analysis from ABC News.

"I think it will be a big success", Trump said. But he says Trump deserves credit for bringing Kim to the negotiating table.

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Pompeo's surprise visit to North Korea appeared to be fruitful, as he returned with three Americans who had been held in North Korean labor camps.

Kim Dong Chul described his time in the North in less pleasant terms, saying through an interpreter, "We were treated in many different ways".

"I think we have a very good chance of doing something very meaningful", Trump said.

Pompeo met with the North Korean leader for 90 minutes, flashing a fingers-crossed sign to reporters when asked about the detainees' fate, according to The Associated Press.

Now, he is working with his own diplomats and with regional allies like South Korea to prepare the agenda for the more high-stakes encounter between two unpredictable leaders.

In spite of an easing of tensions and a return to dialogue in recent months, North Korea has given no indication that it is willing to go beyond statements of broad support the for concept of denuclearization and unilaterally abandon a nuclear weapons program its ruling family has seen as crucial to its survival.

After the end of the Korean war in 1953 the South, an ally of the United States, embraced a capitalist philosophy.

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