Sweden hosts North Korean foreign minister amid speculation

Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un

GETTYDonald Trump accepted last week Kim Jong-un invitation to meet face-to-face

The first meeting, Im said, confirmed the upcoming inter-Korean summit should become a turning point to resolve the Korean Peninsula issues.

"The two leaders expressed cautious optimism over recent developments and emphasized that a brighter future is available for North Korea, if it chooses the correct path", the White House said of the call. Details about their talks were not revealed.

Trump has chosen CIA Director Mike Pompeo to replace Tillerson, but Pompeo is not able to contact the foreign ministers of the two Koreas until his nomination is approved by the Senate.

"We've never been in a position where a president - our president - has met with a leader of North Korea, ever". Just think back to the beginning of this year - we're just three months into 2018 - I don't think any of us would have even imagined any of these taking place.

"So with that relation with North Korea, I believe that they trust us", Lofven said at the White House, adding if the key actors made a decision, "we'll be there".

During a joint press conference at the White House on March 6, Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven offered his country's help in facilitating talks between the US and North Korea, highlighting his country's 45-year diplomatic presence in Pyongyang.

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"We've chose to narrow down the agenda topics to denuclearizing the Korean peninsula, securing permanent peace to ease military tension and new, bold ways to take inter-Korean relations forward", Im, the head of South Korea's summit preparation team, told reporters.

Last week, Lofven held a summit with Trump in Washington, where the North Korea issue was discussed.

"Such things are not practices in diplomacy", he said. Mr. Lim was basically the architect of South Korea's engagement policy with the North dubbed the "Sunshine Policy" during the Kim Dae-jung administration.

On Wednesday, Mr Trump appeared to hint at withdrawing USA troops stationed in South Korea if Seoul failed to address its trade deficit with Washington.

In a letter to U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres last month, he urged the United Nations not to remain silent about what he called "the US unsafe game of aggravating (the) situation in and around the Korean peninsula and driving the whole world into a possible disaster of nuclear war". Ri's trip prompted speculation it could lay the groundwork for the summit in Sweden between Trump and Kim. He declined to give further information.

"They will also address the security situation on the Korean peninsula, which is high on the [UN] Security Council agenda", a ministry statement said.

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