Bolton Claims US Has Plan to Disarm North Korea Within a Year

Bolton Claims US Has Plan to Disarm North Korea Within a Year

The talks were the first face-to-face conversations between the two countries since the summit last month between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and were held to work on implementing the agreement reached between the two leaders, the officials said.

Trump administration officials say North Korea's nuclear program could be fully dismantled in one year, laying out an ambitious time frame if Kim Jong-un's regime cooperates with the U.S.

Satellite image of Yongbyon nuclear facility in North Korea.

Joel Wit, a former diplomat who helped the US negotiate with North Korea including a nuclear agreement between the USA and the regime in 1994, said the USA believed the rogue regime had two sites to "enrich nuclear fuel" including Yongbyon and another, but the name of the center was not revealed.

However, as NPR's Elise Hu reported at the time, "longtime watchers of North Korea's nuclear program say the closing of the site will have little impact on the nation's capabilities".

North Korea is completing a major expansion of a key missile-manufacturing plant, according to new satellite pictures that have cast fresh doubt on Pyongyang's commitment to disarm despite United States pressure.

North Korea is completing a major expansion of a key missile-manufacturing plant, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, citing researchers who have examined new satellite imagery from San Francisco-based Planet Labs Inc.

The assessment stands in stark contrast to President Donald Trump's exuberant comments following the summit, when he declared on Twitter that "there is no longer a nuclear threat" from North Korea. In late May, the envoy led a meeting between US officials and North Korean officials in the demilitarized zone ahead of the Singapore summit.

Pompeo has already visited Pyongyang twice since April to meet with Kim - the first time when he was still director of the Central Intelligence Agency - and there are discussions about a possible third trip to North Korea late next week but such a visit has not yet been confirmed.

A joint communique that Trump and Kim signed said that North Korea would completely denuclearize without offering a timeline or any or logistical information.

USA officials have been vague or dismissive when asked whether Pyongyang has provided a full and detailed accounting of its nuclear program and arsenal - a requirement if monitors are to reliably monitor its destruction.

"I am not going to comment on any reports, true, untrue, or partially true, about intelligence. I am sure that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will be discussing this with the North Koreans in the near future about really how to dismantle all of their [weapons of mass destruction] and ballistic missile programs in a year", Bolton said.

Japan has long maintained a tight-lipped stance about its exact defence posture against North Korea, including the locations of the high-tech Aegis vessels. While Kim has subsequently pledged to halt nuclear-weapons tests, he hasn't said anything about production and has made no commitment to disarm. A solid-fuel missile arsenal would escalate North Korea's threat level considerably.

Bolton said top United States diplomat Mike Pompeo will be discussing that plan with North Korea in the near future. Further in addition to the known uranium-enrichment facility, some 96 kms north of Pyongyang, North Korean is also believed to have been operating a secret underground uranium enrichment site known as Kangson, the Post reported.

"There's not any starry-eyed feeling among the group doing this", Bolton said on CBS's "Face the Nation".

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