Details lacking, long timeline expected for North Korea denuclearization
The summit is over. President Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un have left Singapore. Now it’s time for the details to be worked out.
Professor Allen Weiner, co-director of Stanford’s Center on International Conflict and Negotiation, says it is now up to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his North Korean counterpart to determine a timetable and conditions for denuclearization. Weiner believes denuclearization could be a 10-year process, and he says he wouldn’t be surprised if North Korea continues to hold onto strategic infrastructure for manufacturing during that long timeline.
As you look at the two leaders shaking hands and signing documents in Singapore, the age difference is apparent. President Trump is 71 while leader Kim is 34. Prof. Weiner says Kim is no doubt thinking that he will be his country’s leader far beyond the term of the Trump presidency. Weiner also said he thinks the summit and subsequent negotiations will position Kim to become a dominant force in the Asia-Pacific region in future years.
For some, beyond denuclearization, an effort to get North Korea to address its human rights record is on a list for talks with memories of the imprisonment of American college student Otto Warmbier in North Korea two years ago still fresh. Warmbier was released after 17 months but was in a coma and later died once back in the U.S. North Korea also has a long history of imprisoning citizens accused of political crimes. The United Nations has reported that conditions are harsh and many deaths result.
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