Published: Sat, May 12, 2018
Economy | By Shawn Conner

US will help make North Korea rich if it disarms: Mike Pompeo

US will help make North Korea rich if it disarms: Mike Pompeo

Tomas Ojea Quintana is the United Nations special rapporteur on human rights in North Korea.

Korea watchers have cautioned that North Korea may have something different in mind than the US when it says it's willing to go down a path of denuclearization. He believes the United States and North Korea are "starting off on new footing".

KELLY: Pompeo was speaking alongside his South Korean counterpart at the State Department today, which is where we find NPR's Michele Kelemen.

The group also wants the release of all political dissidents in North Korea. Such a move might force the U.S. to halt the meeting, a presidential spokesman said yesterday.

"We talked about the fact that America has often in history had adversaries who we are now close partners with and our hope that we can achieve the same with respect to North Korea". "We very much appreciate that he allowed them to go before the meeting", he said.

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But in September 2008, the North declared that it would resume reprocessing plutonium, complaining that Washington wasn't fulfilling its promise to remove the country from the US list of state sponsors of terrorism.

He says, "We have no illusions about that".

Shinzo Abe said in a televised interview that Kim should understand that agreements with the United States and South Korea on better relations and denuclearization are not enough to win Japanese aid, and that the abductees must be released.

North Korean President, Kim Jong-Un (R) shakes hands with US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo in Pyongyang.

Trump said Kim was "nice" for letting the three free before a summit planned between the two leaders, which he said would occur "in a few weeks". Again, in terms of diplomacy, it's all about moving forward, and this takes us one step forward, but we're still a long way from the finish line.

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The family of Tony Kim thanked all those who worked for his return and also credited Trump for engaging directly with North Korea. The group is expected to disembark the plane together.

A campaign rally in Indiana Thursday gave the president a chance to celebrate.

In his tweet, Mr Trump added that he would personally greet the detainees when they arrive at Andrews Air Force Base at 02:50 EDT (06:50GMT) on Thursday.

KELEMEN: Yeah. I mean, he spent more time with Kim Jong Un than any other USA official for sure.

The three former prisoners are Korean-Americans.

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The president is accompanied by first lady Melania Trump. A White House spokeswoman said they would be taken to Walter Reed National Military Medical Centre in nearby Maryland for further medical evaluation. He reportedly ran a trade and hotel service company in Rason, a special economic zone on North Korea's border with Russian Federation. The South later in 2016 rejected a highly unusual overture by the North to temporarily send the restaurant workers' relatives to the South to meet with them. In June 2008, global broadcasters were allowed to air the demolishing of a cooling tower at the Nyongbyon reactor site, a year after the North reached an agreement with the US and four other nations to disable its nuclear facilities in return for an aid package worth about $400 million.

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