Kim Jong Un invites Pope Francis to Pyongyang

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Pompeo, who met Kim during a short trip to Pyongyang on Sunday, said the inspectors would visit a missile engine test facility and the Punggye-ri nuclear testing site as soon as the two sides agree on logistics.

Pompeo said progress is being made in efforts to denuclearize the country as talks continue for another possible summit between Trump and Kim.

The U.S. and North Korea agreed to have working-level groups to intensify discussions on delivering Trump and Kim's commitments from their Singapore summit, when the two sides promised to work toward denuclearization and improve relations.

Hearing the Archbishop's words, Kim Jong Un then responded by saying he "certainly must convey" this to the Pope, according to the presidential spokesperson.

Pompeo said the two sides agreed to have "more frequent and higher-level working group discussions than we've had in some time on a set of issues" and stressed that "ultimately some of these big, hard issues have to be resolved by the nations' most senior leaders, and we're hoping to have those presented in a way that the two leaders can resolve them when they get together". When Pope Francis visited South Korea in 2014, he held a mass in Seoul dedicated to reunification of the two Koreas.

But Pyongyang failed to keep its pledge to allow global inspections of its demolition of the Punggye-ri site in May, fanning criticism that the move could be reversed.

Pompeo arrived in China from North Korea and said he wanted to inform Yi about his meeting with the North Korean leader.

Pompeo assured the Japanese leader that his country's interest would be addressed.

"On the issues that you characterized, we have fundamental disagreements..."

North Korea's reported overture comes a few weeks after the Vatican signed a landmark deal with Communist China, North Korea's closest ally, over bishop nominations, aimed at ending decades of tensions that contributed to dividing the Chinese church and hampered efforts at improving relations between China and the Vatican.

Last week, Vice President Mike Pence stepped up the USA pressure campaign against Beijing, going beyond the trade war by accusing China of both "malign" efforts to undermine President Donald Trump ahead of next month's congressional elections and of reckless military action in the South China Sea.

The US has imposed tariffs on virtually half of all Chinese imports into the US and has threatened to target all of its imports.

China hit back angrily, implying that it is the United States that has a track record of meddling in other countries' business. They will use it as a bargaining chip in this whole process. He accused the Chinese government of orchestrating an aggressive military, economic and political campaign to expand its influence inside the United States.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has told US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo that the US should stop attacking China's state policy.

Pompeo declined to comment whether there was progress on a shutdown of the Yongbyon site.

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