White House preparing for Trump-Kim summit

White House says it is continuing to "actively prepare" for June 12 summit between Trump and North Korean leader.

Elad Benari ,

Sarah Huckabee Sanders
Sarah Huckabee Sanders

A top North Korean official is traveling to New York for talks aimed at reviving plans for a meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the White House announced Tuesday, saying it continued to "actively prepare" for the summit, according to Politico.

North Korean official Kim Yong Chol will meet with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo later this week, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement quoted by the website.

The Trump-Kim summit is back on schedule for June 12 in Singapore just days after Trump announced he was canceling it.

The American president said on Friday the summit could go ahead as planned following a more appeasing statement from Pyongyang and productive talks with North Korean officials.

On Sunday, an American team began talks with North Korean officials to prepare a possible meeting between Trump and Kim.

The White House indicated on Tuesday it was back in talks about reviving the get-together, detailing a host of steps to prepare for such an event.

“We have put a great team together for our talks with North Korea. Meetings are currently taking place concerning Summit, and more,” Trump wrote on Twitter on Tuesday. “Kim Young Chol [sic], the Vice Chairman of North Korea, heading now to New York. Solid response to my letter, thank you!”

Sanders said in her statement that "the United States continues to actively prepare for President Trump’s expected summit with leader Kim in Singapore."

She said a U.S. delegation — which includes U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim, National Security Council director for Korea Allison Hooker and Assistant Secretary of Defense for Asian and Pacific Security Affairs Randy Schriver — is meeting with a North Korean team in the demilitarized zone on the border with South Korea.

Washington wants North Korea to quickly give up all its nuclear weapons in a verifiable way in return for sanctions and economic relief.

U.S. officials recently said that North Korea had directly confirmed that Kim was willing to negotiate about potential denuclearization. Kim later announced himself that his country would close its nuclear test site and suspend long-range missile tests.