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Talks supported by Foreign Ministry, which hopes for peace on peninsula
The on-again, off-again meeting between US President Donald Trump and Democratic People"s Republic of Korea leader Kim Jong-un has now shifted back to the "on" mode, as Trump on Sunday confirmed an official US team had been dispatched to the DPRK to prepare for the historic summit scheduled for June 12.
"Our United States team has arrived in North Korea to make arrangements for the Summit between Kim Jong Un and myself," Trump tweeted Sunday afternoon.
"I truly believe North Korea has brilliant potential and will be a great economic and financial Nation one day. Kim Jong Un agrees with me on this. It will happen!" he wrote.
The tweet came a day after South Korean President Moon Jae-in and Kim held a surprise meeting on the northern side of the border village of Panmunjom, their second inter-Korean summit in a month.
Moon said in a nationally televised address on Sunday that both Kim and Trump "wholeheartedly" wished the success of their summit, scheduled for June 12 in Singapore.
On Saturday, Trump said that Washington is "doing very well" in terms of the summit with Kim.
"It looks like it"s going along very well," he said. "So we"re looking at June 12th in Singapore. That hasn"t changed. And it"s moving along pretty well. So we"ll see what happens."
China"s Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said on Sunday that China firmly supports the DPRK and US leaders" willingness to hold the summit, expecting it not only to be held as scheduled but also to successfully bring peace to the Korean Peninsula.
Lu said China has always believed that direct dialogue between the United States and the DPRK was the key to resolving issues of mutual concern on the Korean Peninsula and the ministry hopes both countries can embrace the recent progress achieved on the peninsula.
Sung Kim, former US ambassador to South Korea, reportedly crossed into the DPRK on Sunday to prepare for a summit with Choe Son-hui, DPRK"s vice-foreign minister.
"The key outcome of this meeting is to specify what the US and North Korea mean by "denuclearization" and if there is any overlap between these definitions," said Gregory Koblentz, associate professor at the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. "If not, then summit still in doubt."
On Saturday, Trump told reporters at the White House that he is looking forward to the summit in Singapore. "It hasn"t changed," Trump said, adding that talks were progressing well.
Trump canceled the scheduled meeting on Thursday, saying that it would not happen "based on the tremendous anger and open hostility" displayed in the DPRK"s most recent statements at that time.
He reversed course a day later. Both sides wanted the meeting to happen and it could still go ahead after productive talks, he said.
Hours earlier, before Trump"s statement calling for the summit to continue, the DPRK"s official Korean Central News Agency said Kim expressed his "fixed will" to hold the summit.
Kim made the remarks while having his second meeting with Moon at the truce village of Panmunjom on Saturday.
During the Saturday meeting, Pyongyang and Seoul agreed to hold another high-level talk on Friday that will be followed by inter-Korean military talks to ease
tensions and Red Cross talks to hold a reunion for families separated by the inter-Korean border since the 1950-53 Korean War ended in an armistice, according to the ROK presidential office.
Lyu Chao, director of the border study institute at the Liaoning Academy of Social Sciences, said it should be recognized that the settlement of the nuclear issue is an extremely complicated process.
"It does not happen overnight," he said, adding that Trump"s course reversal fully demonstrated that the Korean Peninsula issue requires more cautious decisions that should not be made impulsively.
Washington"s demand for a "complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization" is inconsistent with Pyongyang"s intention to achieve denuclearization gradually, according to Zheng Jiyong, director of the Korea Research Center at Fudan University, adding that the ideal way to work on the issue is for both parties to "move toward the same goal, make concessions, and show their sincerity", he said.
On Saturday Kim and Moon also announced that the two leaders would meet frequently in the future to make dialogue brisk and to pool wisdom and efforts, and also promised to further push forward the peace process on the Korean Peninsula by working toward denuclearization and improved inter-Korean ties.