Monday, 23 July, 2018

Trump says "it's possible" North Korea nuclear agreement could collapse

FILE- U.S. National security adviser John Bolton said Sunday the U.S. has a plan that would lead to the dismantling of North Korea's nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs in a year Trump: 'possible' North Korea nuclear deal may not 'work out'
Gerardo Duncan | 06 July, 2018, 04:16

Round two would come just three months after the two leaders met in Singapore and as news reports over the weekend say North Korea has continued to work on its nuclear stockpile and is trying to hide its missiles, reports the New York Post.

Evidence newly obtained by US officials points to preparations to deceive the United States about the number of nuclear warheads in North Korea's arsenal as well as the existence of undisclosed facilities used to make fissile material for nuclear bombs, officials told The Post. He said North Korea's weapons program could largely be ended in a year. Korean language watermark on image as provided by source reads: "KCNA" which is the abbreviation for Korean Central News Agency. In an email to the author of the Slate piece, Siegfried S. Hecker, who is a former director of the Los Alamos National Laboratory and has visited North Korean nuclear facilities multiple times, put it this way: The North Koreans "have not yet declared that they would shut the complex down-and, indeed, they have not".

"I am not going to comment on any reports, true, untrue, or partially true, about intelligence".

He said the administration was well-aware of North Korea's track record over the decades in dragging out negotiations with the U.S.to continue weapons development.

"We have developed a program". USA officials have said that North Korea has already identified about 200 sets of remains that could be quickly recovered. "It shows that they are fully committed to maintaining their ballistic missile program".

Even that was viewed as bullish by non-proliferation experts considering the scale of North Korea's weapons program and its history of evasion and reluctance to allow verification of disarmament agreements.

The expansion suggests that Kim is working to make good on his May 2017 order - following a successful test of a Pukguksong-2 missile - to "rapidly mass-produce" the rocket.

The analysis, which was first reported by the Wall Street Journal, is the latest to undercut Trump's assurances that North Korea is "no longer a nuclear threat" after his June 12 meeting with Kim in Singapore.

"I think a number of things have happened. I really believe he means it", the president said on Fox News Channel's "Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo".

"We got back our great fallen heroes, the remains sent back today, already 200 got sent back", Trump said in Duluth, Minnesota, on June 20.

But Pentagon spokesperson Col. Rob Manning told reporters Monday he was unaware of a timeline for any transfer, saying USA diplomats are still working with North Korea.

But new satellite imagery shows an expansion of a missile-manufacturing site capable of producing missiles that could hit US military installations in Asia.

Nauert said that Pompeo "is looking forward to having meetings with his North Korean counterparts" - his fourth with North Koreans and his third trip to Pyongyang.

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