Dismantling of North Korea’s Nuclear Arsenal to Precede Sanctions Relief

President Donald Trump will demand from North Korea’s Kim Jong-un to act quickly and dismantle the country’s nuclear arsenal when the two leaders meet. According to officials, Trump will also not consider significant sanctions relief before this condition is met.

“When the President says that he will not make the mistakes of the past, that means the U.S. will not be making substantial concessions, such as lifting sanctions, until North Korea has substantially dismantled its nuclear programs,” a senior Trump administration official said on Sunday.

“If North Korea is willing to move quickly to denuclearize, then the sky is the limit. All sorts of good things can happen,” the official added.

Kim previously said that North Korea would close its nuclear test site and suspend long-range missile tests. His statement, made after a meeting of the central committee of North Korea’s ruling party, was welcomed and considered an important step toward establishing a good atmosphere for a summit meeting, expected to take place in late May or early June, somewhere outside Asia.

President Trump applauded the statement on Twitter, but also warned that things might not work out. In a tweet Sunday he said that “only time will tell” whether things will work out. Trump also responded to criticism that Pyongyang is getting more out of the talks than Washington.

“Wow, we haven’t given up anything & they have agreed to denuclearization (so great for World), site closure, & no more testing!” the President’s tweet read.

According to CNN, a North Korea source said that the country’s leader has decided to commit himself to denuclearization and economic growth, as well as to improving the national economy. The source added that Kim realizes that normalized relations with other nations are the best way forward.

However, he also said last month that he favored “phased, synchronized measures to achieve peace.” During the meeting with CIA Director Mike Pompeo earlier this month, Kim tried to push him toward a phased agreement in which each side would make paired concessions on a timetable that could stretch out for years, a person familiar with the matter said.

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