A high-ranking North Korean official arrived in NY on Wednesday after flying in from Beijing to hold talks with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, as both sides accelerate the pace of preparations for a possible summit between their leaders.
Pompeo has frequently been involved in high-level talks with North Korean officials since joining the Trump administration, and traveled to the country earlier this month where he secured the release of three remaining USA citizens held by the country.
A senior North Korean official and the top US diplomat have had dinner in NY as President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un try to salvage prospects for a high-stakes nuclear summit. He is the highest-level representative from the North to set foot in the United States since 2000.
Trump indicated this month that, should North Korea initiate a process of denuclearization, the regime would receive "protections that would be very strong", possibly in the form of lifting economic sanctions and America not advocating for any form of regime change.
North Korea's mission to the United Nations in NY is its sole diplomatic presence in the United States.
Saturday's meeting between Moon and Kim took place on the North Korean side of Panmunjom, a village that straddles the border between the two countries, where the 1953 armistice was signed.
White House spokesperson Sarah Sanders confirmed the leaders still planned to meet next month.
The news follows the White House revealing on Tuesday that it plans to continue to "actively prepare" for the recently scrapped summit between Trump and Kim.
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Earlier in the day, the White House left open the possibility of a Trump-Kim summit on June 12 in Singapore, despite Trump's cancellation of the meeting just days ago.
Kim Yong-hyun, professor of North Korea studies at Dongguk University in Seoul, said Moon and Kim moved quickly to defuse the crisis after Trump's shock cancellation.
He invited Clinton to North Korea, but the visit never happened.
A top North Korean official has arrived in NY, as Pyongyang and Washington work to see if a summit can still go forward between President Donald Trump and leader Kim Jong Un.
The negotiations are taking place on multiple tracks after Trump revived plans for the direct meeting with Kim, initially slated for June 12 in Singapore, but which the United States president called off last week. Japanese media have also quoted government officials as saying Abe could visit Washington for talks with Trump before the G7 meeting.
Pyongyang may also allow South Korea to help provide humanitarian aid in the form of food delivery to the millions of North Koreans starving outside the relatively prosperous capital of Pyongyang.
Meanwhile, it was announced on Wednesday that Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov would travel to North Korea for talks on Thursday.
But analysts say North Korea will be unwilling to cede its nuclear deterrent unless it is given security guarantees that the USA will not try to topple the regime.