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(LEAD) N. Korea says Trump recognizes importance of phased, simultaneous approach to denuclearization

All News 07:17 June 13, 2018

(ATTN: ADDS more info from 4th para)

SEOUL, June 13 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's state media said Wednesday that its leader Kim Jong-un and U.S. President Donald Trump shared the view that "step-by-step" and "simultaneous" actions are important to achieve peace and denuclearization.

The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) added that Trump expressed his intention to suspend all joint military drills between South Korea and the U.S. while talks are underway between Pyongyang and Washington.

The KCNA report came a day after Kim and Trump held a historic summit in Singapore on Tuesday. The two signed a four-point joint statement.

"Kim Jong Un clarified the stand that if the U.S. side takes genuine measures for building trust in order to improve the DPRK-U.S. relationship, the DPRK, too, can continue to take additional good-will measures of next stage commensurate with them," the KCNA said. DPRK is the abbreviation for the North's formal name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

"Kim Jong Un and Trump had the shared recognition to the effect that it is important to abide by the principle of step-by-step and simultaneous action in achieving peace, stability and denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula," it added.

The U.S. has demanded complete and speedy denuclearization of the North for fear that subsequent verification process could be drawn out. The North has said that it wants a phased approach in dismantling its nuclear weapons program.

In the summit agreement, Kim and Trump affirmed their commitment to "complete" denuclearization, falling short of expectations that a complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization of the North would be agreed as the U.S. has wanted.


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