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What to look for at the summit

14 0 0
11.06.2018
By John Burton

No one believes anymore that the summit in Singapore between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will lead to Pyongyang immediately giving up its nuclear and missile programs. Many thorny issues remain such as what is meant by "denuclearization" of the Korean Peninsula. Does that mean just that North Korea would eventually dismantle its nuclear and missile programs or that the U.S. will also withdraw its nuclear umbrella from the peninsula?

Even if North Korea agrees to the U.S. interpretation of denuclearization, it will likely take months or even years of tedious negotiations to achieve that goal. In the meantime, North Korea will need to be assured that it can trust the U.S. in terms of security guarantees, while starting to receive economic benefits that makes the abandonment of its nuclear program worthwhile.

Trump seems to understand this situation and is treating the summit as a means to open serious negotiations. But a good starting point would be for Trump to declare at the summit his intention to bring a formal end to the Korean War, which he has already suggested he would do.

Trump is also showing other signs of flexibility, acknowledging that denuclearization will take time and that his policy of "maximum........

© The Korea Times