Putin to MEET Kim Jong-un as Russian Federation invites North Korean dictator

Casey Dawson
June 5, 2018

South Korea's Yonhap news agency says all three have been replaced ahead of the 12 June summit in Singapore, the first meeting between sitting leaders of the United States and North Korea.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said the two leaders would meet at 9am local time in the Asian city-state, adding that Trump was receiving daily security briefings on North Korea in anticipation of the meeting.

North Korean media had earlier reported that Army General Kim Su Gil had succeeded Kim Jong Gak as director of the army's powerful General Political Bureau, one of the most senior positions in the country.

Both countries have faced worldwide isolation - North Korea over its nuclear weapons program, and Syria over its tactics during its bloody civil war. "All three of them have held very sensitive and high level positions under Kim Jong Un, they're very loyal (to him), and all have experience interacting with foreign delegations".

Other analysts say the measure was to replace the old guard with "economically minded" individuals who could carry out Kim's goal of developing North Korea's impoverished economy.

Kim's motivation to reshuffle his upper ranks was unclear but analysts said the shake-up allows him and the ruling party to tighten control over the KPA at a crucial time of domestic and global developments.

Other replaced officials include Pak Yong Sik and Ri Myong Su.

He has undertaken a flurry of diplomatic activity recently, meeting China's president in May, and is expected to attend a summit with Donald Trump this month.

The political bureau could be in a position to resist policy decisions by the leadership or try to profit from future South Korean economic aid, it said.

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Ryan Gaydos is an editor for Fox News.

In a remarkable shift in tone eight days after canceling the summit, citing Pyongyang's "open hostility", Trump welcomed North Korea's former intelligence chief, Kim Yong Chol, to the White House on Friday, exchanging smiles and handshakes.

Trump met with former North Korean spy chief Kim Yong Chol for about 90 minutes Friday - the highest-level North Korean official to visit the U.S. in 18 years.

Kim is said to have spent the night at the North's Embassy in Beijing and will fly back to North Korea on Monday.

White House Deputy Chief of Staff Joe Hagin, the puppeteer pulling the strings on the U.S.

"Schumer also warned Monday that Democrats would be watching the progress of negotiations to ensure their principles are met, and that "if we think that the president is veering off-course, we would not hesitate to move" to increase mandatory sanctions against North Korea or otherwise make it impossible for the president to use his waiver authority".

Gen Kim Yong-chol's visit came a day after he met US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in NY, who described their talks of denuclearisation as "substantive".

The North, meanwhile, has noted possible stumbling blocks for the talks, including denunciations of upcoming military exercises involving the United States and South Korea.

Trump wants North Korea to "denuclearize", meaning to get rid of its nuclear arsenal, in return for relief from economic sanctions.

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