Senior North Korean official Kim Yong Chol met with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in New York, Wednesday, ahead of a potential summit in Singapore between the leaders of the two countries next month.
While Pompeo has traveled twice to North Korea in recent weeks, the meetings Wednesday and Thursday will be the highest-level talks between the two sides in the USA since 2000, when Vice Marshal Jo Myong Rok flew to Washington to meet with then-President Bill Clinton.
U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jung Un had been scheduled to hold an unprecedented summit in Singapore on June 12.
Kim Yong Chol, left, Vice Chairman of North Korea, during his meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, centre, Wednesday in NY.
The report also details that Kim may offer "limited American investment in North Korea, particularly in infrastructure".
Lavrov spoke to his U.S. counterpart Pompeo by telephone for the first time on Wednesday ahead of the Secretary of State's dinner meeting with Kim Yong-chol.
Both levels of negotiations between USA and North Korean officials are aimed at closing the gap on the issue of North Korea's nuclear weapons program ahead of the potential June 12 summit.
-North Korea summit, the White House said.
"Even if those demands are all met, it is impossible to find the whereabouts of all nuclear weapons in North Korea", he said.
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Kim told Lavrov he hoped to boost cooperation with Russian Federation, which has remained largely on the sidelines in recent months as Kim has made a major diplomatic outreach to the U.S.as well as to South Korea and China.
Pompeo has frequently been involved in high-level talks with North Korean officials since joining the Trump administration, and traveled to the country earlier this month where he secured the release of three remaining US citizens held by the country. The White House said in a background briefing that North Korean officials hadn't answered their calls, frustrating their attempts to plan for the meeting.
The US delegation's hotel in Seoul, the Four Seasons, is besieged by South Korean reporters, waiting to see if they leave for discussions in Panmunjom, approximately 45 minutes' drive north of the capital. The North Koreans complained about administration officials talking up the so-called "Libyan model", a scenario that ended with the death of that country's leader.
Pompeo, Trump's former Central Intelligence Agency chief, has travelled to Pyongyang twice in recent weeks for meetings with Kim Jong Un. The following day, North Korea issued a conciliatory statement, which was welcomed by Trump, and requested an emergency summit with South Korean President Moon Jae-in.
The State Department released photos of a smiling Pompeo shaking hands with Kim Yong Chol, pointing out NY landmarks to him by a window and toasting his guests.
"Come to Russia. We would be very happy to see you", Lavrov, seated across a table from Kim, said.
Views differ about how long it could take for North Korea to denuclearize.
He added: "One major difference is that the current process is a top-down process where Trump himself personally makes the decision "we will do the summit", "we will not do the summit"; and that kind of process may deliver extremely significant outcomes, but at the same time I think that there is a high risk that it would also lead to disastrous outcomes".