North Korea's Kim Sends Auspicious Letter to Trump, Floats Another Meeting

U.S. President Trump and North Korea's Kim walk together before their working lunch during their summit in Singapore

U.S. President Trump and North Korea's Kim walk together before their working lunch during their summit in Singapore

In the translated letter, dated July 6, Mr. Kim praised his relationship with Mr. Trump and said the Singapore summit was "indeed the start of a meaningful journey".

In it, Mr Kim says: "I deeply appreciate the energetic and extraordinary efforts made by Your Excellency Mr President".

"I firmly believe that the strong will, honest efforts and unique approach of myself and Your Excellency Mr. President aimed at opening up a new future between the DPRK and the United States will sure surely come to fruition", Kim writes, according to the translation tweeted by the president.

The North Korean leader also voices hope that "the invariable trust and confidence in Your Excellency Mr. President will be further strengthened in the future process of taking practical actions".

The meeting was expected to be the first working-level talks between the two sides since Pompeo's visit to Pyongyang ended Saturday with North Korea denouncing the U.S.'s "unilateral and gangster-like demand for denuclearization". Kim also agreed to repatriate remains of United States troops who died during the Korean War six decades ago.

Last month, Trump said North Korea had agreed to give back the remains of thousands of soldiers, and that the transfer had already begun, a claim Pompeo later corrected before a U.S. Senate committee.

"Denuclearization is something the North Koreans are not focusing on other than being part of a general denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, not unilateral denuclearization", he said, alluding to the North's longstanding demand that the US also remove its nuclear umbrella over South Korea. "We will be ready", she said in a statement.

A planned meeting Thursday between North Korean and USA officials in the Demilitarized Zone between the two Koreas to discuss the return of the remains was postponed.

"The North Koreans were just messing around, not serious about moving forward", the source told CNN's Michelle Kosinski, adding that Pompeo had been promised a meeting with Kim, and the fact that it failed to materialize sent a big message.

CNN reported last month that the Trump administration is expecting North Korea to return up to 200 sets of remains and that planning for the exchange has been underway.

"We have to see the USA defense ministry's response, but the UNC reportedly gave a positive signal to North Korea, so there is a good chance of the talks taking place on Sunday", the source said.

But North Korea's delegation failed show up.

Trump has sought to cast his summit with Kim as a major victory, although reports have suggested North Korea is continuing with its nuclear programme and promises of "denuclearisation" remain vague.

State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said the North Koreans called around midday to say the meeting would be delayed until July 15.

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