North Korea says recent comments by U.S. Vice President Mike Pence were "stupid" and "ignorant" and is again warning it is willing to pull out of a planned summit between leader Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump.
Choe Son Hui, the vice minister of foreign affairs, was quoted Thursday by the North's state-run news agency slamming comments Pence made in an interview with Fox News that compared North Korea to Libya.
She is questioning whether the summit, scheduled for June 12 in Singapore, will be worthwhile if the remarks reflect Washington's position.
Choe says, "Whether the U.S. will meet us at a meeting room or encounter us at nuclear-to-nuclear showdown is entirely dependent upon the decision and behavior of the United States."
A White House team is heading to Singapore this weekend to work on logistics for President Donald Trump's planned summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (kim jawng oon).
Trump cast doubt Tuesday on the future of the June 12 meeting. But a White House spokesman, Raj Shah, says the U.S. "always sends advance teams ahead of any scheduled presidential visit."
Shah says Joe Hagin - the deputy chief of staff for operations - will go to Singapore over the weekend to continue the preparations.
President Donald Trump says he will know next week whether his planned summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is still on, as his administration looks to keep the historic meeting on track.
He says: "We will know next week about Singapore and if we go I think it will be a great thing for North Korea."
On Tuesday, Trump expressed doubts about the June 12 meeting taking place as scheduled when he hosted South Korean President Moon Jae-in at the White House, amid concerns that the North isn't committed to discussing dismantling its nuclear program.
Speaking from the White House before boarding Marine One on Wednesday, Trump said, "Someday a date will happen," for the North Korea talks, adding, and "It could very well be June 12."
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says it is ultimately up to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un whether a planned summit with President Donald Trump takes place.
Pompeo was asked at a congressional hearing if the meeting in Singapore on June 12 will happen or not after Trump said Tuesday "there's a very substantial chance" it won't go off as planned.
Pompeo said Kim "asked for the meeting, the president agreed to meet with him. I'm very hopeful that meeting will take place."
He was testifying Wednesday before the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says the Trump administration will walk away from talks with North Korea if the "right deal" is not on the table for negotiation.
Pompeo told the House Foreign Affairs Committee in prepared testimony on Wednesday that a "bad deal" is not an option. He says preparations continue for a planned June 12 summit in Singapore between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
Pompeo says previous U.S. administrations had been "fooled before and we can't permit that to happen again."
However, based on his own discussions with the North Korean leader, Pompeo said he was hopeful that Trump could convince Kim to make a strategic decision to denuclearize.
The United States and South Korea are working to keep the scheduled U.S. summit with North Korea on track - even after President Donald Trump's comment that "there's a very substantial chance" it won't go off as planned.
Trump and South Korea's leader met in the Oval Office on Tuesday, and President Moon Jae-in says "the fate and the future of the Korean Peninsula hinge" on the summit set for June 12 in Singapore.
The summit would offer a historic chance for peace. But there also is the risk of a diplomatic failure that would allow the North to revive and advance its nuclear weapons program.
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