Kim Jong Un invites Pope Francis to visit North Korea

North Korean government North Korean leader Kim Jong Un center left and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo walk together before their meeting in Pyongyang North Korea Sunday Oct. 7 2018. Pompeo said that he and Kim

Kim Jong Un wants Pope Francis to visit his country and believes he would be welcomed "enthusiastically", according to South Korean officials.

He said North Korean leader Kim Jong-un had agreed to allow worldwide inspectors into the Punggye-ri nuclear test site that was dismantled in May.

Ms Nauert said Mr Pompeo "held productive discussions" with Kim.

Pompeo said he's "hopeful" worldwide inspectors would soon be allowed on select sites associated with North Korea's missile and nuclear program, and didn't comment on Pyongyang's insistence that inspectors would be allowed into the Yongbyon site only if the US took corresponding measures.

Pompeo said there are many issues on which Washington and Beijing disagree but it is important that both sides listen to each other.

Commenting on Pompeo's meeting with Kim, South Korean President Moon Jae-in said Kim was expected to visit Russian Federation soon.

In response, Pompeo said the two countries have a "fundamental disagreement".

Unlike a trip in June, Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) did not grant Pompeo an audience. On that occasion, he did not meet with Kim.

According to the former official, the North Korean diplomats told him that denuclearization for them refers to a process by which the USA also reduces its nuclear weapons, possibly worldwide.

A senior U.S. State Department official said the United States still expected cooperation with Beijing on efforts to denuclearise North Korea, whose chief ally is China.

In late 2015, top North Korea official Kim Yang Gon reportedly died in a vehicle accident.

A similar situation occurred in June 2000 after then-President Kim Dae-jung returned from his summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Il in Pyongyang, telling the press he would convey an invitation to visit Pyongyang to Pope John Paul II.

The move signals a new step forward in Pyongyang's commitment to denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula.

He said current China-U.S. ties were at a critical phase, and China would maintain peaceful development and continue reform and opening-up, to realize rejuvenation while avoiding the "power leading to hegemony" stereotype. The visit was the latest indication of deteriorating ties between the US and China, as the two sides tussle over everything from trade to Taiwan and the South China Sea.

DPRK state media most recently reported on the church in August through unification-focused outlet Ryomyong, saying a mass prayer there called for "self-determined" unification of the two Koreas.

Moon also said the North will "permanently dismantle" its missile engine testing site and launch platform in the northwestern town of Tongchang-ri in the presence of experts from "concerned countries".

The challenge for the USA remains stark: American administrations for decades have been stymied by North Korean intransigence on its nuclear program, and the rapport between Trump and Kim hasn't resolved that issue.

The U.S. says denuclearization means North Korea giving up its weapons.

"I've never been involved in an worldwide discussion where there weren't differences of view, not only between governments but inside of governments", he said.

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