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Pompeo en route to N.Korea

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WASHINGTON, April 26, 2018 (Xinhua) -- File photo taken on April 12, 2018 shows that Mike Pompeo testifies before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for his nomination to become the secretary of state on the Capitol Hill in Washington D.C., the United States. The U.S. Senate on April 26 narrowly confirmed Mike Pompeo as the new secretary of state to replace Rex Tillerson. (Xinhua/Ting Shen/IANS) by .
US Secretary of Sate Mike Pompeo (Xinhua/Ting Shen/IANS)

The President also referred to the three Americans being held prisoner by North Korea whom he has promised several times would soon be freed, possibly as a gesture of goodwill by Pyongyang in advance of the Trump-Kim summit….reports Asian Lite News

U.S.-WASHINGTON D.C.-PRESIDENT-TRUMP-SYRIA by .

President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was en route to Pyongyang to prepare for an upcoming summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

“At this very moment, Secretary Pompeo is on his way to North Korea in preparation for my upcoming meeting with Kim Jong-un,” said Trump in a Tuesday appearance to announce Washington’s withdrawal from the nuclear pact with Iran, Efe reported.

The President announced Pompeo’s trip at the end of his remarks regarding Iran, during which he stated that the US “will not be held hostage by nuclear blackmail” by Tehran, adding that “The US no longer makes empty threats. When I make promises, I keep them.”

Responding to reporters’ questions, Trump said that Pompeo would be landing in North Korea in about an hour.

“Plans are being made, relationships are building, hopefully a deal will happen, and with the help of China, South Korea, and Japan, a future of great prosperity and security can be achieved for everyone,” said Trump.

The President also referred to the three Americans being held prisoner by North Korea whom he has promised several times would soon be freed, possibly as a gesture of goodwill by Pyongyang in advance of the Trump-Kim summit.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un

When asked if Pompeo would be bringing the three Americans home when he returns to the US, Trump said only “We’ll all soon be finding out.”

The three prisoners are 64-year-old Kim Dong-chul, 58-year-old Kim Sang-duk and Kim Hak-song, about 60, all born in South Korea but who later acquired US citizenship.

Last week, Trump said that a date and location for his meeting with the North Korean leader had already been set, although he refused to reveal any further details.

To date, the White House has said that the meeting would happen in late May or early June and that several sites were being considered, including Singapore and the border between the two Koreas, Trump reportedly favouring the latter.

The meeting between Kim and Trump will be the first between North Korean and US leaders after almost 70 years of confrontation that began with the 1950-1953 Korean War and 25 years of failed negotiations.