US President Donald Trump is set to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un to discuss the possibility of denuclearisation, after a surprise invitation was sent to the US President.
Relayed by South Korean national security advisor Chung Eui-yong, the invitation will set up the first meeting between a US president and a North Korean leader in 50 years.
Mr Trump has expressed confidence that the meeting will be productive in helping defuse the tense relations between the two nations.
“The deal with North Korea is very much in the making and will be, if completed, a very good one for the World. Time and place to be determined,” he tweeted.
The White House believes that its “maximum pressure” campaign is having an effect in putting significant pressure on North Korea, leading to the invitation.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders has defended against claims that the meeting is being granted with no benefit to the US, saying North Korea has shown it is willing to make concessions.
“They’ve made promises to denuclearize. They’ve made promises to stop nuclear and missile testing. And they’ve recognized that regular military exercises between the U.S. and its ally, South Korea, will continue,” she said in a White House press briefing.
Some experts caution that granting a meeting so easily will benefit the North Korean leader more than it will the US, handing them a considerable propaganda victory.
Being able to meet with the US president offers the regime legitimacy, and previous presidents have been unwilling to grant a visit until North Korea was ready to fully denuclearise.