Trump releases letter from Kim Jong Un, touts "great progress"

S. Korea approves rare screening of N. Korea films

Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Mark Warner, D-Virginia, wrote to Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats on Thursday, asking him to answer a number of questions related to North Korea's progress, in light of statements made by President Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. But given the harsh statements from Pyongyang following Pompeo's trip last week - the North Korean Foreign Ministry blasted Washington's stance on denuclearization as "gangster-like" - it's possible that it's gonna be a long, long time.

His top deputy, who took the meeting in Kim's absence, said his boss was out of town without revealing what was more important than a sit-down with the top USA diplomat. Pompeo also brought a letter for Kim from the president but didn't get to meet the North Korean dictator.

More details were not immediately available. "They didn't show." The newspaper identifies the negotiators waiting for the North Koreans as "Department of Defense and United Nations Command" officials.

"We were ready", the official said.

The US military has since announced that 100 wooden coffins have been moved to the inter-Korean border in preparation.

"And they know how important the return of the remains of our P.O.W.s missing from the Korean War are to us".

When Trump announced the USA would halt joint military drills with South Korea, he backed his controversial move by citing the "tremendous" costs of such exercises.

However, recovery efforts were suspended when the relationship between both countries worsened, as the North began the advancement of its nuclear programme.

The transfer of remains between North Korea and the United States has not taken place since 2005.

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While recovering the war dead would provide Trump a political victory similar to Kim's May release of three American detainees, it would do little to advance the goal of dismantling the regime's weapons program.

South Korea's urbanization is one reason why more than a 1,000 USA service members are unaccounted for, said McKeague. Identities would not be confirmed until after what is often a lengthy and complicated forensics process.

The North's state media normally lead their television bulletins and front pages with Kim's doings, but a seven-day absence from the headlines, including during Pompeo's visit, had prompted speculation on his whereabouts among Korea-watchers.

The U.S. and North Korea were scheduled to hold a meeting at the South Korean border village of Panmunjom on Thursday for talks on repatriation of remains of U.S. soldiers but North Korea reportedly didn't show up.

Much progress has been made compared to 20 years ago but "significant humanitarian challenges" remain, Lowcock said.

North Korea has imposed a testing moratorium, with the last missile test occurring on November 28, and it destroyed its main nuclear testing facility, although experts say those moves could be reversed.

"North Korea would have to deal with the consequences of breaking away from the negotiations if it were to do so, so it will likely not make an extreme decision", Kim said.

He said the government and military would work to design a new civil defence programme to be launched next year that will be aimed at preparing people for natural disasters and terrorist attacks in addition to military attacks. "We're not going to be sidelined or sidetracked".

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