11.03.2018 | Mike Pence demies USA U-turn on North Korea ahead of Trump-Kim meeting
Source - The Sunday Express
Mr Pence has insisted the decision to meet does not represent a shift in policy.
In a statement, the US Vice President said: “The North Koreans are coming to the table despite the United States making zero concessions.
“Our resolve is undeterred and our policy remains the same.”
The Trump administration has also affirmed that it does not intend to loosen sanctions on Pyongyang.
Both Japan and China have welcomed the summit, which is to be held by May.
It is understood that the US is keen to avoid Donald Trump being used as a PR tool by North Korea as he defies decades of precedent by meeting with Kim Jong-un.
Washington has in the past turned down meetings with North Korean leaders for fear of legitimising the tyrannical regime.
Both Kim Jong-un and his father, Kim Jong-Il, have before sought an audience with US counterparts in an attempt to boost their standing.
However, the Trump administration has insisted that its policy towards North Korea remains unchanged.
There is no indication where historic talks between the US and North Korea will take place but the Trump White House will not want to hand Kim Jong-un a public relations victory by being pictured in Pyongyang.
If Kim does travel to meet President Trump it would be the first time he has left the country since becoming its supreme leader in 2011 following the death of his father Kim Jong-il.
It seems unlikely the dictator would accept an invitation to visit Washington or President Trump’s estate in Florida, where President Xi Jinping of China has previously been a guest.
Experts said the prospect of a meeting between a sitting US president and North Korea means officials are taking the secretive state’s nuclear ambitions seriously.
The most likely venue will be a neutral location, with China, Japan, South Korea or UN offices in Geneva or New York possible.
Christopher Hill, a former US ambassador to North Korea, said: “My advice would be the President should not journey to Pyongyang.
"Nor should he invite Kim Jong-un to Washington."