N. Korea's nuclear disarmament could take 15 years, expert warns

N. Korea's nuclear disarmament could take 15 years, expert warns

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met in NY for a working dinner Kim Yong-chol, the former military intelligence chief and one of Kim Jong-un's closest aides.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un complained of "U.S. hegemonism" to Russia's visiting foreign minister on Thursday, a comment likely to complicate ties with the United States as plans proceed for Kim's expected summit with President Trump in Singapore next month.

High-ranking officials of the US and North Korea have met in NY in the first of two days of talks about the future of Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programme and a possible summit between US President Donald Trump and leader Kim Jung Un.

Lavrov spoke to his USA counterpart Mike Pompeo by telephone for the first time on Wednesday ahead of the secretary of state's dinner meeting with Kim Yong Chol.

When asked about the working dinner, Pompeo told reporters afterwards: "It was great".

"There will be many challenges that need to be overcome" before North Korea's Kim Jong-un would commit to the US demand for "complete, verifiable and irreversible" denuclearization, said Cho Myoung-gyon, Seoul's unification minister.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump.

In remarks Sunday, Moon said he hopes to pursue a trilateral summit to declare the end of the Korean War.

General Kim Yong Chol, vice chairman of the central committee of the Workers' Party and right-hand man to Kim, is also in NY, officials said. A USA delegation is meeting with North Korean officials in the demilitarized zone between the North and South to discuss the summit's content.

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There was a further signal of progress Saturday as White House press secretary Sarah Sanders confirmed a team of USA officials was leaving for Singapore "in order to prepare should the summit take place".

Lavrov's May 31 visit - his first to North Korea since 2009 - was seen as an attempt by Moscow to ensure its voice is heard in Pyongyang's diplomatic overtures with the United States and South Korea.

The Trump administration is believed to have granted him a temporary waiver this time to allow him to visit NY, where North Korea has a diplomatic mission to the United Nations. It's the highest-level official North Korean visit to the United States in 18 years.

The White House is continuing to press ahead on three fronts with preparations for the proposed summit with Kim in Singapore on June 12.

He was also a bodyguard to Kim Jong Il, the former leader and late father of Kim Jong Un, according to North Korea Leadership Watch, an affiliate of the 38 North think tank.

"I want it to be meaningful", he added. "We welcome the summits that already took place between Pyongyang and Seoul as well as planned meetings between North Korean and USA leadership". But the authors of the study say time is also needed to assuage North Korea's security concerns.

Thursday's meeting between Kim and Lavrov took place at the Paekhwawon State Guest House in Pyongyang, the Kremlin-run TASS news agency reported quoting a source in the Russian delegation.

That means that North Korea has Russia, China and South Korea on its side versus the U.S, which is now one of the only powers arguing that sanctions relief should come later, CBS News' Margaret Brennan reports.

If not enough progress is made to lead to a productive meeting between Trump and the North Korean leader, the official said, "we will ramp up the pressure on them and we'll be ready for the day that hopefully they are ready".

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