A top North Korean official was headed Tuesday to the USA, as diplomacy surrounding a possible nuclear summit in Singapore between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un kicked into high gear.
During a campaign rally in Atlanta in June 2016, Trump said he would want to talk nukes with Kim over burgers and fries.
'Kim Young (sic) Chol, the Vice Chairman of North Korea, heading now to NY.
"Everybody knows they are not going to denuclearize", one unnamed intelligence official told NBC News, adding the report was circulated earlier this month - before Trump canceled the originally scheduled June 12 summit.
In this May 26, 2018 photo North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, center left, and South Korean President Moon Jae-in, right, walk after their meeting at the northern side of Panmunjom in North Korea.
Earlier this month, North Korea also threatened to withdraw from the Trump talks if the United States continued to insist Pyongyang abandon its nuclear programme.
The New York talks suggest that planning for the unprecedented summit, initially scheduled for June 12, is now moving ahead - and possibly into a more advanced phase.
South Korean Yonhap News yesterday said it saw Kim Yong-chol's name on the passengers' list for a Tuesday flight from Beijing to Washington.
Sputnik spoke to Dr Zhiguang Yin lecturer in Chinese at University of Exeter about the summit and how even without the U.S., it could go ahead.
A ministry statement said that the two vessels were suspected of engaging in offshore ship-to-ship transfers banned under U.N. Security Council resolutions.
"Ever since then practically, North Korea, South Korea and the United States have been making very positive moves", Conway said.
In recent years, the United States has accused North Korea of launching a slew of cyberattacks, and it wasn't immediately clear if there was any significance to the timing of the latest warning, which came as President Donald Trump is eying nuclear talks with leader Kim Jong Un.
That echoed what he said over the weekend, saying "we're moving along nicely".
Moon, who has lobbied hard for nuclear negotiations between Trump and Kim Jong Un, held a surprise meeting with the North Korean leader Saturday in an effort to keep the summit alive.
Meanwhile, Kim Yong Chol, a senior official in North Korea's ruling Workers Party was seen boarding a flight from Beijing to NY.
"The secretary will be heading up to NY tomorrow and I believe returning some time on Thursday", she said.
Trump cited hostile comments from North Korea as the reason he withdrew from the potentially historic summit.
How important is it that the North Korean general is heading to Washington?
Japan has been aiming to resolve the North Korean nuclear, missile and abduction issues.
North Korean Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui also was quoted by the country's official news agency threatening to use nuclear force and she referred to U.S. Vice President Mike Pence as a "political dummy".