WASHINGTON U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Sunday that if North Korea agrees to full denuclearization, the United States is prepared to "provide security assurances" for the Pyongyang government and allow private American investment to build out the country's woefully inadequate electrical grid.
"We will have to provide security assurances, to be sure," the top U.S. diplomat told Fox News. "This is a trade-off that has been pending for 25 years."
He said that until President Donald Trump, "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, leading to the place where America was no longer held at risk by the North Korean regime. That's the objective."
However, in a CNN interview, national security adviser John Bolton ruled out direct economic aid from the U.S. government to North Korea. He credited the "maximum pressure" of Trump's economic sanctions on North Korea to Kim's announced willingness to abandon the country's nuclear weapons program.
Pyongyang says it is dismantling its nuclear bomb test site sometime between May 23 and 25 and said that western observers would be allowed in to watch as tunnels at the site are collapsed with explosives and research buildings and security posts destroyed.
Pompeo said, "Every single site that the North Koreans have that can inflict risk upon the American people that is destroyed, eliminated, dismantled is good news for the American people and for the world. And so this is one step along the way."
On Saturday, Trump said on Twitter, "Thank you, a very smart and gracious gesture!" Trump said Saturday on Twitter.
While the U.S. expressed willingness for private investment in North Korea, Bolton said that renewed economic sanctions against Iran after Trump's withdrawal of the U.S. from the 2015 international accord restraining Tehran's nuclear program could be "quite dramatic." He described Iran's economy as "quite shaky."
European allies of the U.S. opposed Trump's abrogation of the Iran pact. Bolton said it is possible that the U.S. could block European companies from doing business in the U.S. if they continue to do business with Iran.
Source: Voice of America