US team in NKorea raises expectations of a Trump-Kim summit

President Moon Jae-in met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un for a second time at the border truce village of Panmunjom

President Moon Jae-in met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un for a second time at the border truce village of Panmunjom

Mr. Trump withdrew from a planned June 12 Singapore summit with Kim last Thursday, but quickly announced it could still happen.

Although the precise agenda was unclear, it was expected that the two leaders would discuss ways of reducing tensions and denuclearising the Korean peninsula.

Reporting from South Korea's capital, Seoul, Al Jazeera's Andrew Thomas said it was "symbolically important" that the talks were held on the north side of Panmunjom.

Despite the cancellation of the summit, the North Korean government responded with some restraint, saying: "The first meeting would not solve all, but solving even one at a time in a phased way would make the relations get better rather than making them get worse".

A meeting between the two Koreas had been called off ahead of Trump's announcement he, too, would not meet with the North Korean leader.

Moon will announce the outcome of his two-hour meeting with Kim on Sunday morning, officials said.

The two leaders held a surprise meeting at the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), CNN reported, citing, the South Korean presidency, as saying in a statement.

Kim has launched a diplomatic offensive since the beginning of the year, meeting not only with Moon but also Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing.

Trump's withdrawal came after North Korea blasted recent comments by Vice President Mike Pence, who suggested Kim Jong-un will end up like slain Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi if he doesn't denuclearize North Korea.

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"We would like to make known to the USA side once again that we have the intent to sit with the USA side to solve problem regardless of ways at any time", Kim Kye Gwan, a vice foreign minister, said in a statement carried by the country's official media on Friday.

"It's moving along very nicely, so we're looking at June 12th in Singapore; that hasn't changed", Trump said.

The spy chiefs from both sides were at the meeting according to the photos.

"It was a very nice statement they put out", Trump said at the White House. "We're talking to them right now".

"We express our willingness to sit down face-to-face with the United States and resolve issues anytime and in any format", North Korea's vice foreign minister Kim Kye-gwan said in a statement.

Kim Kye Gwan said North Korea appreciated Trump for having made the bold decision to work towards a summit.

North Korea informed its own people of the meeting between Moon and Kim, with reports in state-run media hailing a "new era of reconciliation and unity".

China's Foreign Ministry said it hoped the June 12 summit can happen as planned and be successful.

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