Pompeo 'very hopeful' North Korea talks will still take place

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo testifies

He was testifying Wednesday before the House Foreign Affairs Committee. "I'm very hopeful that meeting will take place".

"We will know next week about Singapore", he told reporters at the White House before departing for NY.

US President Donald Trump warned Tuesday his landmark summit with Kim may be delayed, while insisting the North Korean leader was "serious" about denuclearization.

Pompeo was asked at a congressional hearing if the meeting in Singapore on June 12 will happen or not after Trump said Tuesday "there's a very substantial chance" it won't go off as planned.

Yoon Young-chan, senior secretary for public relations, said Moon assured Trump of North Korea's honest intentions, Seoul Economic Daily reported Wednesday. Libya's longtime autocratic leader Moammar Gadhafi was killed several years later after a Western-backed military intervention.

Pompeo says previous USA administrations had been "fooled before and we can't permit that to happen again". "If we go, I think it'll be a great thing".

North Korea conducted several nuclear tests over the past few years and developed long-distance missiles which, it says, can carry nuclear bombs as far as the USA mainland. On Wednesday it was escorting a group of worldwide reporters, including an Associated Press Television crew, to witness the closure of its atomic test site.

Many observers had argued before Mr Trump met Mr Moon that there was too much at stake for Washington and Pyongyang not to proceed with the Singapore summit.

The former Central Intelligence Agency director, who has met twice with Kim since the start of April, told the committee that it's his hope that when Trump and Kim confer "we can get the North Koreans to make this strategic shift about how best to serve the country - that the nuclear weapons program isn't in fact the thing that keeps the regime in power, but the thing that prevents the regime from being in a place it wants to be with economic success".

Mr Pompeo said the USA was prepared to walk away from the talks and a "bad deal" was not an option.

Trump agreed in March to meet with Kim in response to an invitation relayed by South Korea, without first consulting his advisers or running through possible outcomes.

"We will know next week about Singapore", he told reporters at the White House before leaving for NY, the day after acknowledging that there's a "very substantial chance" the summit will be canceled.

It was unclear whether Trump was truly backing away from the summit or whether he was strategically coaxing North Korea to the table after decades of tension on the Korean peninsula and antagonism with Washington over its nuclear weapons program. "North Korea summit", Yoon said, quoting remarks Moon made during discussions with Trump.

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