With less than a month left before the hugely-anticipated talks between US President Donald Trump and North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore, the US top diplomat has indicated that any deal paving the way for a nuclear-free Korean peninsula will have to include certain US safeguards allowing Kim to stay in power.
"We will have to provide security assurances to be sure. This has been the trade-off that has been pending for 25 years,"Pompeo told 'Fox News Sunday.' Pompeo was speaking to Fox's Chris Wallace just a few days after he returned to the US from his second meeting with Kim, during which they were supposed to thrash out the details of the Trump-Kim summit on June, 12.
The upcoming talks are being hailed as a monumental personal success by Donald Trump, who, just months ago, berated Kim as a "mad man" and as a "rocket man on a suicide mission," threatened him with "fire and fury" and boasted about having a bigger nuclear button. Now, the Trump administration is using the negotiations as a way of saying it's better than the previous ones.
"No president has ever put America in a position where the North Korean leadership thought that this was truly possible that the Americans would actually do this, would lead to the place where America was no longer held at risk by the North Korean regime,"Pompeo said.
As for Kim being a "dictator" and "oppressor" with a poor human rights record – apparently, the safety of the US eclipses that.
"Look, we'll have to see how the negotiations proceed. But make no mistake about it: America's interest here is preventing the risk that North Korea will launch a nuclear weapon into L.A. or Denver or to the very place we are sitting here this morning, Chris," Pompeo said.