The White House on Sunday — April 8, a month after President Trump told South Korean envoys he would meet Kim Jong Un — said it had been in contact with North Korea and received the assurance that Kim Jong Un is willing to talk denuclearization. The definition remained up in the air, as the news accounts showed. The official statement amounted to one sentence. The Journal’s Michael Gordon in Washington got the scoop here. And Jonathan Cheng in Seoul summarized the meaning in a tweet:
— Jonathan Cheng (@JChengWSJ) April 9, 2018
At least, it shows that the official silence from Pyongyang has broken. The Times noted there is still no assurance of a summit. The Post’s account quotes Evans Revere, a former U.S. diplomat who has remained an interlocutor in North Korea matters via the unofficial channels used by the two countries, warning against getting too excited. His comment seems aimed at some of the Trump devotees who are portraying the prospective summit as a sign that North Korea is ready to give up its decades-long weapons program. “Various outlets are describing this as a major breakthrough on North Korea’s commitment toward denuclearization. It’s no such thing,” Revere said.
I doubt there will be much more news on this from the U.S. side until after John Bolton starts work at the White House today.