White House 'fully expects' talks with North Korea to go ahead... but no contact so far

백악관"북미 정상회담 열릴것이라고 전적으로 기대"

As for those talks between the U.S. and North Korea, the Trump administration isn't backing off.
The White House says it "fully expects" the potentially historic talks to go ahead.
All North Korea has to do is keep its promises -- no weapons testing.
But the U.S. Secretary of State has also revealed that so far Washington has had no direct contact with Pyongyang.
Kwon Jang-ho has this report.
The White House brushed away any concerns on Monday over whether the unprecedented talks between the U.S. and North Korean leaders will be able to take place, and said that preparations are underway.
White House Spokesperson Sarah Sanders explained that as long as Pyongyang keeps up its end of the bargain, the talks will go ahead.

"Look, we fully expect that it will. The offer was made and we've accepted. North Korea made several promises and we hope that they will stick to those promises and if so the meeting will go on as planned."

However, U.S. Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, who is currently on a diplomatic tour of African countries, revealed that so far there has been no direct contact with Pyongyang over the talks.

"There will be, several steps will be necessary to agree on a location, agree on the scope of those discussions, it's very early stages, we've not heard anything directly from North Korea although we expect to hear something directly from them."

Meanwhile, the National Security Advisor, H.R. McMaster briefed the United Nations Security Council on Washington's plans for the talks.
He stressed that throughout this process the international community needs to continue to maintain pressure on the North Korean regime.

"We all, we all agreed that we're optimistic about this opportunity but we're determined. We're determined to keep up the campaign of maximum pressure until we see words matched with deeds and real progress toward denuclearization."

However, at a separate UN meeting on Monday, the UN Human Rights Council said that although the upcoming talks could be a historic occasion, they also urged all parties that
North Korea's human rights record must be remembered and discussed with the regime.

"My main message today is that any advancement on the security dialogue should be accompanied by a parallel expansion on the human rights dialogue."

Kwon Jang-ho, Arirang News

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