North Korea understands scope of USA denuclearisation request - Pompeo


"We've been pretty unambiguous in our conversations about what we mean when we say complete denuclearisation", Pompeo told a Senate subcommittee hearing.

One will connect the South's eastern border county of Goseong with the North's major eastern port of Wonsan, and the other will run between the North's western city of Kaesong and the capital Pyongyang, said the statement. It might be impossible to embark on such projects unless North Korea denuclearizes, which isn't a sure thing. Survival is highly dependent on China, and sanctions to counter North Korea's nuclear threat have put further pressure on the economy.

Pompeo was also questioned about Trump's saying after the summit with Kim that North Korea no longer posed a nuclear threat, an assertion questioned by analysts and mocked by Democrats.

"We took the tension level down", he added.

Pompeo was questioned by the Senate Appropriations Committee on a range of topics including Iran's nuclear capabilities.

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"It is the set case that we have observed China not enforcing control over their cross-border areas as vigorously as they were six or 12 months ago", he said, but said that was in comparison to what had been an all-time high.

By contrast, Pyongyang is expected to call on Seoul to start joint work early on road repairs and connection on the assumption that the sanctions will be eased in line with progress in the denuclearization of North Korea. It noted "continued operations" at the North's uranium enrichment plant and several new installations at the site - including an engineering office and a driveway to a building housing a nuclear reactor. While these sites can not be detected by monitoring groups, they are assumed to remain operational, according to Wit.

But he said he is confident the North Koreans understand "the scope of the request we're making with respect to denuclearization".

Experts at 38 North, a website affiliated with the Stimson Center in Washington D.C. devoted to analysis of North Korea, concluded the images show that "improvements to the infrastructure at North Korea's Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center are continuing at a rapid pace".