US finds North Korea killed Kim brother with VX agent

The United States formally concluded Tuesday that North Korea murdered Kim Jong Un's half-brother with the banned VX nerve agent, blasting Pyongyang for deploying a chemical weapon in a packed international airport.

This has been seen in the past to mean the removal of the 28,500 U.S. troops stationed as a deterrent against the North in South Korea and a halt to annual U.S. -South Korean military exercises that the North claims are invasion preparations. As it has always done, Pyongyang pocketed the up-front concessions and used the talks to buy more time.

Foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told reporters Wednesday that China was "pleased to see the positive outcomes from those exchanges and interactions between the two sides". The reunions are emotionally charged and not terribly political, so that would be low-hanging fruit.

Gardner noted the new sense of openness on behalf of the North is a result of significant sanctions from the U.S. and allies around the world. "He shouldn't go in there with too much optimism about he can get out of that meeting", James Kim, an international relations expert at the Asan Institute for Policy Studies in Seoul, told Sputnik. But is it too good to be true?

Ian Bremmer, president of consulting firm Eurasia Group, said on Twitter that he didn't believe North Korea would ever denuclearise, but said it had reason to engage in talks to reduce the prospects of war.

Moon was quoted as saying by his spokesman, Kim Eui-kyeom, that "Globally coordinated sanctions cannot be eased even if the two Koreas are talking".

Kim Jong-nam was largely estranged from his family and was bypassed for the leadership in favour of his younger half-brother, Kim Jong-un. "As long as the allied with the South, that would be considered a security threat".

After a year of threatening "fire and fury" and ridiculing North Korea's young leader Kim Jong Un, Trump is now touting diplomatic progress between the rival Koreas.

Similarly, President Donald Trump's administration has not clarified whether North Korea must pledge the "denuclearization" Trump has demanded as a precondition for substantive talks. Chung Eui-yong, who headed the delegation to the North, accompanied the president and briefed the top politicians about his trip.

"By restarting aggressive military movements like the joint drills with South Korea, the United States is engaging in a severe act of provocation that intentionally worsens the situation on the Korean Peninsula", KCNA stated, contradicting reports from South Korean delegates suggesting Kim does not oppose the restarting of joint military drills.

"Our nuclear [program] is aimed at punishing and securing peace from aggressors and warmongers, not threatening anyone", the column continued.

"The North Korean side clearly stated its willingness to denuclearize", the envoys said.

Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said on Wednesday it was "extremely important" that North Korea show its commitment and concrete actions toward abandonment of its nuclear missile development in a complete, verifiable and irreversible way.

"The United States strongly condemns the use of chemical weapons to conduct an assassination".

In reality, they say, any strike against North Korea would require overwhelming military force and would almost certainly put 30,000 US personnel and millions of other allied civilians in South Korea at immediate risk.

The official also affirmed that such dialogue may take place before a summit between South and North Korea scheduled in April, KBS reported.

Since North Korea pulled out of so-called six-party denuclearization talks in 2009, Pyongyang has developed new nuclear capabilities. But he added, "The United States has been clear that we respect the sovereignty and the sovereign decisions that the Republic of Korea may make in its own best interest".

Fear of U.S. disengagement under Trump does appear to have helped revive some long-stalled initiatives to consolidate European military capabilities and procurement.