US President Donald Trump names Vietnam for second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un

PHOTO: Reuters

US President Donald Trump told a group of television news anchors hours before his State of the Union address on Tuesday that he plans to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-un for a two-day summit in Vietnam on February 27 and 28.

Trump is expected to formally announce the details of his second summit with Kim during remarks from the House of Representatives chamber later in the evening, four sources familiar with his plans told POLITICO.

Should the meeting occur later this month as expected, it would be Trump's second summit with Kim over the last year and the first time a US president has twice met with the leader of the authoritarian regime.

The two men held a historic first meeting in Singapore in June, during which they agreed on a framework for future negotiations, including that North Korea would begin to work toward "complete denuclearisation."

The Vietnam summit between Trump and Kim comes after the US president and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met North Korea's nuclear envoy Kim Yong-chol in Washington last month.

Soon after, Stephen Biegun, US special representative for North Korea; Choe Son-hui, North Korea's vice-minister of foreign affairs; and Lee Do-hoon, South Korea's special representative for Korean peninsula peace and security affairs took part in trilateral talks in Stockholm.

After those talks, Seoul produced a report listing what it saw as the possible outcomes of a second Trump-Kim summit.

These include, on Pyongyang's part, the closure under international observation of the Punggye-ri nuclear test site, Tongchang-ri missile launch site and Yongbyon nuclear research facility, and the discontinuation of all nuclear activities.

As compensation, the US might take steps aimed at, "improving US-North Korea relations, building a peace regime and implementing trust-building measures", the report said.

Relations could be improved with the opening of a US-North Korea liaison office, the commencement of talks on the normalisation of relations, and the promotion of social, cultural and human exchange programmes, it said.

Declaring an end to the Korean war and starting multilateral negotiations would aid the creation of a peace regime, while promoting humanitarian assistance and repatriating the remains of US soldiers killed in the Korean war would aid trust building, it said.

This article was first published in South China Morning Post.