A summit is possible with the US President Donald Trump and North Korea on denuclearisation. The North Korean leader Kim Jong Un looks quite frustrated over the lukewarm response of the United States as he did not receive any positive response from the United States over the question of denuclearisation. He travelled to Beijing in a bid to find solutions to the summit or find the way the United States is responding. The idea of a summit remained in vague and Kim and Chinese President Xi Jinping discussed means favourable to the summit.

The outlook in Pyongyang was brightened. The announcement by the United States made a big breakthrough in relations between North Korea and the United States. It was announced that a meeting will take place in Vietnam in February removing all doubts and paving the way for their second interaction after Singapore. Hawaii and Bangkok used to be other possible venues for this interaction. Vietnam has been lauded as a role model for North Korea in terms of prosperity and normalising ties.

Pyongyang wanted to remove all kind of sanctions against it and see the regime to function perfectly. Hanoi and Dangang could be too possibilities. Vietnam is considered a good neutral point between the two countries. The country has diplomatic relation with Washington and Pyongyang. Both Hanoi and Danang can provide adequate facilities and security for the summit. Choosing Vietnam’s capital “is highly symbolic and could, therefore, be a valuable strategic move for both parties.” In the past, American has fought an expensive war in Vietnam. This time it is seeking its assistance to success overcomes an international strategy in North Korea.

Both leaders met at Singapore and sort out major difficulties in June last. Pyongyang intends to remove its nuclear program if the United States provide sufficing guarantee for North Korea leading to remove its nuclear program. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has reaffirmed his commitment to the denuclearisation and vowed efforts to produce good results from his second summit with U.S. President Donald Trump.

This was announced when Kim made a visit to Beijing recently that “the DPRK will continue sticking to the stance of denuclearisation and resolving the Korean Peninsula issue through dialogue and consultation, and make efforts for the second summit between DPRK and U.S. leaders to achieve results that will be welcomed by the international community,” Xinhua quoted Kim as saying during talks with Xi.

A letter was delivered by President Trump to Kim in order to finalise their meeting. Kim Yong-chol, the North’s highest official in charge of negotiations with the United States and Seoul, will hand over a letter to Trump.

Vietnam was symbolically important for both Washington and Pyongyang as it has diplomatic relations with both states and is seen as neutral. Vietnam began its programme of free-market economic reforms known as Doi Moi in 1986, with the goal of creating a socialist-oriented market economy, along the lines of Deng Xiaoping’s Chinese reforms.

There is deep mistrust between North Korea and the United States. The National Security Adviser John Bolton often explains that trend. He believes that North Korea has hardly taken any serious steps toward denuclearisation. He believes that the United States is waiting for North Korean denuclearisation. He thinks that North Korea should continue with the Singapore process of denuclearisation. He thinks that delays have been causing damage. His strategy that together with Iran, North Korea should also denuclearised.

By all definitions and standards, denuclearisation is meant to reduce tension on the Korean Peninsula. A ban on such weapons for military use could serve the most popular purpose. And in future conflicts these weapons should be prevented and not allowed to enter into any conflict.

Americans will take the responsibility of a denuclearised North Korea. The trust and confidence of North Korea on the United States will be essential. A rewarding point is what the United States could offer to North Korea? What would be U.S. incentives to be offered to North Korea? How these measures would work between North Korea and the United States? How the “complete denuclearisation” will take place on the Korean Peninsula to satisfy the United States, South Korea, and in any other interesting party? Could North Korea dismantle the Yongbyon main nuclear complex or intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs)? And finally Kim will be willing to give up its nuclear weapons and at what cost? These are vital questions related to North Korea’s denuclearisation. Hope the United States has answered to these vital questions.


The writer is Consultant at

the Institute of Strategic

Studies Islamabad. He writes on

East Asian affairs.