Pompeo to head to North Korea as doubts mount over denuclearization


He added: 'What it suggests is that Kim has no intention of surrendering his nuclear weapons'.

The White House appeared to support Bolton's comment with Sarah Sanders, the spokeswoman, saying Monday, "As far as the one-year timeline, Ambassador Bolton said if North Korea makes the decision, their nuclear and ballistic missile programs could be dismantled in a year" and there's "great momentum right now".

"There's no evidence that they are decreasing stockpiles, or that they have stopped their production", one unnamed US official briefed on the latest intelligence told NBC News last week.

It seems North Korea is only speeding up the pace at which it can build more nuclear weapons.

"The president is essentially taking North Korea's side", he said Tuesday night. Even that was viewed as bullish by nonproliferation experts considering the scale of North Korea's weapons program and its history of evasion and reluctance to allow verification of disarmament agreements.

Sung Kim, who has played a critical role in the negotiations with Pyongyang, led a delegation that met with their North Korean counterparts in Panmunjom, a village on the demilitarized zone separating the two countries, the Washington Post reported.

On CBS's "Face the Nation," Bolton said North Korea's nuclear arsenal could be dismantled in a year if Pyongyang cooperates, adding that the program would require "full disclosure of all [of North Korea's] chemical and biological, nuclear programs, ballistic missile sites".

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"I made a deal with him, I shook hands with him, I really believe he means it", said Trump.

Trump's national security adviser, John Bolton, insisted that North Korea's nuclear program could still be dismantled within a year. The follow-up round of talks between the two men would come when world leaders are in US for the U.N. General Assembly meeting, Axios reported.

He said the administration was well-aware of North Korea's track record over the decades in dragging out negotiations with the U.S.to continue weapons development.

The Stanford team has proposed a 10-year roadmap, based on its belief that "North Korea will not give up its weapons and its weapons program until its security can be assured".

"I think they're very serious about it", he said. "Let them discuss these issues and see exactly where there might be room for progress or where we find there is no room at all".

Citing satellite imagery, a monitoring group last month said operations and infrastructure works were continuing at the North's main Yongbyon nuclear site, while the Trump administration itself has cited "an unusual and extraordinary threat" from Pyongyang's nuclear arsenal to extend decade-long sanctions.

Trump held a summit with dictator Kim Jong Un last month in Singapore, which yielded a joint statement promising North Korea's denuclearization but lacking firm language on how that goal would be verified.