South Korea’s Yonhap news agency says U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is likely to meet with his North Korean counterpart in the United States next week.
The news agency reports that the two sides are trying to arrange a meeting shortly after the U.S. midterm elections on Nov. 6.
Pompeo told VOA contributor Greta Van Susteren in an interview on Oct. 19 that he hoped the meeting would take place “in the next week and a half or so.”
Yonhap reported Monday that a South Korean diplomatic source with knowledge of U.S.-North Korea negotiations said, “At the time of Secretary Pompeo’s remarks, [the meeting] was being planned for the end of October, but I understand that it was delayed by a couple days due to circumstances on the U.S. side.”
“The location will probably be the U.S. East Coast,” the source said.
Pompeo has met during previous talks with Kim Yong Chol, vice chairman of North Korea’s ruling Workers’ Party Central Committee. However, the Nikkei Asian Review is reporting that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s sister Kim Yo Jong could also join the talks. Kim Yo Jong is said to have a close relationship with her brother.
The meeting between Pompeo and the North Korean delegation is expected to focus on continuing discussions about North Korea denuclearization, as well as another potential summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and the North Korean leader.
Pompeo told VOA this month that a date for that summit has not yet been set, but said Trump is “committed” to it. “We’re working on finding dates and times and places that will work for each of the two leaders,” he said.
Earlier this month, the United States and South Korea suspended another major military exercise in a continued push for diplomacy.
The two countries have suspended several military exercises since an unprecedented June summit between Trump and Kim in Singapore, where Trump announced the U.S. would stop what he called “provocative” and “expensive” “war games” with South Korea.
He said the move was as an act of good faith and in response to North Korea’s commitment to denuclearization, and its continued suspension of nuclear and missile tests.