Will know next week if summit with Kim takes place: Trump

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Washington, May 24 (IANS) US President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that “next week” it will become known whether the anticipated summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will take place on June 12 in Singapore, as scheduled, or will be postponed.

“We will know next week about Singapore. Someday a date will happen. It could very well be June 12th,” Trump told reporters at the White House before departing for New York to participate in an event concerning immigration.

“Whatever it is, we’ll know next week. If we go, I think it will be a great thing for North Korea,” Efe quoted the President as saying.

Trump announced two weeks ago that his historic summit with the North Korean leader had been scheduled for June 12 in Singapore, but uncertainty regarding the meeting increased substantially last week when Pyongyang threatened to cancel it because of the White House’s insistence that it “unilaterally” denuclearize.

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On Tuesday, Trump said that “There’s a very substantial chance that it won’t work out. It may not work out for June 12,” adding that “If it doesn’t happen, maybe it will happen later. … We are talking.”

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said shortly after Trump’s remarks that the US was continuing to prepare for the summit and was aiming for the June 12 date.

“We are working to make sure that there’s a common understanding about the contents of what will be discussed, but I’m optimistic,” said Pompeo.

The top US diplomat, who has met twice with Kim in recent weeks, insisted on Wednesday that he is still “optimistic” about the prospects for the summit in an appearance before the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

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