Kim Jong Un invites Pope Francis to Pyongyang


Wrapping up a four-day trip to Pyongyang and Seoul in Beijing today, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the USA and North Korea are "pretty close" to agreeing on logistics for a second summit between dictator Kim Jong-un and President Trump.

China has stepped up its war of words with the U.S., following a frosty back-and-forth between its Foreign Minister Wang Yi and visiting U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Monday.

This week, he held talks with the USA secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, where Pyongyang's official KCNA news agency said he "explained in detail the proposals for solving the denuclearisation issue", although no details were provided.

Pompeo and Kim also discussed "denuclearisation steps that will be taken by North Korea and the issue of attendance by the USA government", as well as "corresponding measures" to be taken by the United States, the statement said.

He initiated offers for summits with Seoul and Washington, which led to three meetings with Moon and a highly choreographed June summit with U.S. President Donald Trump at which they issued an aspirational goal of a nuclear-free peninsula, without describing how or when it would occur.

"When he meets Pope Francis, he will convey Chairman Kim's message that he will ardently welcome him if he visits Pyongyang", he said.

"Kim Jong Un expressed satisfaction over the productive and wonderful talks with Mike Pompeo at which mutual stands were fully understood and opinions exchanged", KCNA said. Senior ruling party officials turned up for the game, but North Korean leader Kim Jong Un didn't attend.

"I like him, he likes me, the relationship is good", Trump said of Kim.

"Progress made on Singapore Summit Agreements!"

"We will make - we will figure it out and make it work", Pompeo told his greeter.

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At the same time, the United States and China are cooperating on efforts to pressure North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to give up his country's nuclear weapons and long-range missile programs.

"You got no rockets flying, you have no missiles flying, you have no nuclear testing", Trump said in the Oval Office.

During Mr Pompeo's last visit to Pyongyang in July, he was denounced for making "gangster-like demands".

Mr Kim's invitation will be formally delivered by President Moon of South Korea when he visits the Vatican.

Trump and Kim held an historic first summit in Singapore on June 12 at which Kim pledged to work toward denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.

If ties between the two countries continued to deteriorate, there could be "profound changes" in the strategic environment for such regional issues as North Korea, China's state-backed Global Times tabloid warned in an editorial.

Moreover, Chinese officials signaled the discord undermines efforts to cooperate on North Korea, making the USA bid to disarm Kim's regime even less likely.

North Korea has 'agreed to denuclearization. and they continue to agree, ' the president said. "We've made incredible progress - beyond incredible".

South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha has given a hint of what a grand bargain between the two countries could look like.

The United States and Japan have pushed for the North to turn over a list of its nuclear sites to be dismantled as a next step in the process.