>> The President has made very clear what the Secretary->> Trump's top intelligence chief, Mike Pompeo, made a secret visit to see North Korea's Kim Jong-un. That's what a senior US official told Reuters Tuesday, who said the trip happened over the Easter weekend. The official also said Pompeo's conversation fueled Trump's belief that productive negotiations with Kim were possible, but far from guaranteed.
Reuters' David Brunnstrom is following the story.>> Essentially, the reason for the meeting is to what was to try and assess how serious Kim is about coming to an agreement over denuclearization with the United States. I think it's fair to say that the fact that so senior official as Mike Pompeo and one who is so close to President Trump should go to Pyongyang is the strongest indication of Trump's seriousness about pursuing this summit with Kim.
>> Earlier in the day at Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, the President revealed the US had been engaged in direct talks with Pyongyang. He made them known at the start of his second summit with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Trump said that the time and place of the meeting with Kim are still being determined.
But he did say he wouldn't be in the United States. And that while it was possible that the summit could take place in late May or early June, it may not happen. Meanwhile, North Korea is expected to dominated Trump's meetings with Abe this week.>> I think what Abe is concerned about is that Trump might seem to do a deal with North Korea, to do away with intercontinental ballistic missiles.
And not take sufficient account of the medium range and intermediate range missiles that are capable of hitting Japan.>> As expected, Abe raised the issue of the plight of Japanese abductees, an issue viewed as critical for Japan to join any deal with North Korea, which Trump pledged to bring up with Kim.
The two are also expected to tackle trade. Trump recently said he'd review his decision to pull out of a 12 nation Asian trade deal that Japan strongly supports. Still unclear is whether Trump might link US help on North Korea to trade concessions from Japan.>>