Kim Jong Un: Commitment to Denuclearize Peninsula Unchanged

© Sputnik / Valeriy Sharifulin / Go to the photo bankRussian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, left, and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un meet in Pyongyang
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, left, and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un meet in Pyongyang - Sputnik International
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North Korean leader Kim Jong Un announced Thursday that Pyongyang's determination to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula has not changed since agreeing to a summit with US President Donald Trump, the nation's state media reported.

Kim made the remarks during a meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, North Korean state outlet KCNA reports. Moscow and Pyongyang will hold a bilateral summit during the 2018 calendar year. 

Lavrov arrived in Pyongyang roughly 15 hours ago following an invitation from North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho. 

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un guides the launch of a Hwasong-12 missile in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on September 16, 2017 - Sputnik International
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The North Korean leader said the country's will for denuclearization is "unchanged and consistent and fixed," and that he hopes it, as well as developing a relationship with the United States, can be arranged "stage by stage," KCNA added. 

Lavrov commended Kim's commitment and the country's decision to warm relations with South Korea and the United States, saying the Korean Peninsula had entered a "phase of stability." Russia hopes the potential Washington-Pyongyang summit is a success, the North Korean outlet said. The two officials and their delegations also discussed developing political and economic cooperation.  

Speaking aboard Air Force One, the US president's designated travel aircraft, the same day, a White House aide told reporters that Trump is expecting North Korean General Kim Yong Chol, a high-ranking official in North Korea's ruling Workers Party, to visit the White House on Friday and deliver a letter from Kim. 

Trump and Kim will potentially meet in Singapore on June 12. Trump agreed in principle to the summit in March, backed out weeks later, then agreed to consider it again within hours.

On Wednesday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo hosted a dinner with North Korean officials in New York City. The former CIA director called it a "Good working dinner." In remarks Thursday, he noted that US and North Korean teams are at work in Singapore preparing for the possible summit, and said, "We think that working together, the people of the United States and North Korea can create a future defined by friendship and collaboration, not by mistrust and fear and threats."   

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