Trump reaffirms second North Korea summit plan

US President Donald Trump and South Korean President MoonJae-in shake hands after signing a trade agreement at a bilateral meeting in New York, on Sept 24, 2018.
US President Donald Trump and South Korean President MoonJae-in shake hands after signing a trade agreement at a bilateral meeting in New York, on Sept 24, 2018.PHOTO: AFP

BUENOS AIRES (AFP) - US President Donald Trump reaffirmed on Friday (Nov 30) in a meeting with his South Korean counterpart Moon Jae-in that he wants a second summit with North Korea's leader, the White House said.

Trump and Moon, meeting on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Buenos Aires, "reaffirmed their commitment to achieve the final, fully verified denuclearisation" of North Korea, Trump spokesman Sarah Sanders said.

They agreed on the need for "maintaining vigorous enforcement of existing sanctions to ensure the DPRK understands that denuclearisation is the only path", Sanders said, using an abbreviation of the North's official name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

However, Trump made clear that he also wants to follow up on his historic June summit in Singapore as he tries to persuade the reclusive regime to give up its nuclear weapons.

"President Trump discussed his intention to have a second US-DPRK summit," Sanders said, and the two leaders "restated their commitment to closely coordinate on next steps".

Moon's top press secretary, Yoon Young-chan, was quoted by Yonhap news agency as saying that Trump "asked that South Korea and the US closely cooperate so the next summit will be another historical milestone in the process of denuclearising the Korean Peninsula".

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was due to meet a top North Korean official in early November, but the meeting was abruptly put off, with North Korea insisting that the United States ease sanctions.