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White House remains upbeat for expected Trump-Kim meeting
Last Updated: 2018-05-31 07:23 | Xinhua
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The White House said on Wednesday that the multi-track talks between Washington and Pyongyang went on well so far and it still expected a June 12 meeting between leaders of the United States and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).

The U.S. delegation, led by U.S. veteran diplomat Sung Kim, met with the DPRK officials earlier on Wednesday at the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), and their talks will continue, said the White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders at a daily briefing.

The spokesperson also noted that the U.S. advance team, which was in Singapore for logistics preparation for the summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and the DPRK top leader Kim Jong Un, met with a DPRK team on Wednesday and the meetings were expected to continue on Thursday.

Sanders said that the ongoing conversations were centered on the "denuclearization of the peninsula."

"So far, the readout from these meetings has been positive, and we'll continue to move forward in them," the spokesperson added.

On Tuesday, the White House announced that Kim Yong Chol, vice chairman of the DPRK's ruling Workers' Party of Korea Central Committee, was traveling to New York and will meet with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

Sanders revealed at the briefing that Pompeo will be headed to New York for a dinner with Kim on Wednesday night and they were expected to have a full-day meeting on Thursday.

The White House press secretary remained optimistic about the prospect of an off-again, on-again Trump-Kim meeting.

"We're going to continue to shoot for the June 12 and expect to do that," Sanders said.

The latest positive progress for the summit, originally scheduled for June 12 in Singapore, came after Trump canceled the meeting in a letter to Kim Jong Un last Thursday, citing "tremendous anger and open hostility" displayed by Pyongyang recently.

In response to Trump's letter, the DPRK's First Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye Gwan said early Friday that the country is ready to sit down with the United States any time in any manner for talks to solve the problems existing between them.

Trump then reversed course, saying both sides wanted the meeting to happen and it could still go ahead after productive talks. He also confirmed on Sunday that a U.S. official team had arrived in the DPRK to talk about the preparation for talks.

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