WASHINGTON (AP) — America and the world can "sleep well tonight," President Donald Trump declared on Wednesday, boasting that his summit with Kim Jong Un had ended any nuclear threat from North Korea though the meeting produced no details on how or when weapons might be eliminated or even reduced. While Trump claimed a historic breakthrough at the most significant diplomatic event of his presidency, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, was more measured. He said that Trump's tweet was made "with eyes wide open" to the possibility diplomacy could falter, and that the U.S. wants North Korea to take "major" nuclear disarmament steps within the next two years — before the end of Trump's first term in 2021.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says there will be no sanctions relief for North Korea until it denuclearizes. Pompeo is pushing back on a report from North Korean official state media that said President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un had agreed to a "step-by-step" process. That was interpreted as meaning the U.S. would grant concessions to North Korea concessions along the way despite longstanding U.S. insistence that it would not. Pompeo says Trump has been "incredibly clear" about the sequencing of the process. Speaking alongside Japanese and South Korean foreign ministers in Seoul, Pompeo says that "we're going to get denuclearization." He says that "only then will there be relief from the sanctions."
MONTAUK, N.Y. (AP) — Even after winter storms left East Coast harbors thick with ice, some of the country's top chefs and trendy restaurants were offering sushi-grade tuna supposedly pulled in fresh off the coast of New York. But it was just an illusion. No tuna was landing there. The fish had long since migrated to warmer waters. In a global industry plagued by fraud and deceit, conscientious consumers are increasingly paying top dollar for what they believe is local, sustainably caught seafood. But even in this fast-growing niche market, companies can hide behind murky supply chains that make it difficult to determine where any given fish comes from.
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — The rival Koreas were holding rare high-level military talks Thursday to discuss reducing tensions across their heavily fortified border. It's possible North Korean officials during the talks at the border village of Panmunjom will seek a firm commitment from the South on stopping its military drills with the United States. President Donald Trump said after his summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Tuesday that the allies should stop the war games during nuclear negotiations in "good faith." South Korea's presidential office has said it's trying to discern Trump's meaning and intent, but also that the allies should explore various ways to "further facilitate" dialogue with the North.
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — It was just months ago when President Donald Trump used his first State of the Union address to condemn the cruelty of North Korea's government. But after his historic summit on Tuesday with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, whom he described as "very smart" and having a "great personality," Trump seemed to play down the severity of human rights violations in North Korea. "It's rough," Trump allowed after being asked about North Korea's human rights record. He then said: "It's rough in a lot of places, by the way. Not just there." Few expected Trump to seriously raise North Korea's horrific human rights problems during his first meeting with Kim, which was mainly about addressing the threat of Pyongyang's nuclear weapons.
BEIJING (AP) — The outcome of the Singapore summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was good news for one absent but key player: China. China won big at the summit after Trump made surprising pledges to suspend war games with South Korea and eventually pull U.S. troops from there. Beijing dislikes the U.S. military presence in South Korea and Japan and has urged Washington to suspend the drills that Pyongyang claims are rehearsals for invasion, in return for the North's halting of nuclear activities. Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told reporters Wednesday that Trump's drills suspension announcement was "another proof that China's proposal is legitimate, is reasonable (and) it addresses the concerns of the two sides." China wants to see a reduction in foreign military forces in Northeast Asia and for the gap between Washington and its allies and partners to widen, said Ryan Hass, who directed China policy for the U.S.
SINGAPORE (AP) — When South Korea's president shuttled between North Korea and the United States to broker their first-ever summit, he faced both praise and criticism over whether he was a peace-making mediator or was helping North Korea find ways to weaken U.S.-led economic sanctions. A day after President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un held their summit in Singapore, is it clearer whether Moon Jae-in played a positive or negative role? A quick answer: Probably not. Assessments of Moon's diplomacy have become more divisive and complex, with Trump criticized in both South Korea and the U.S. for the concessions he made to North Korea, while others believe the summit will successfully prolong the current mood of detente.
SARIWON, North Korea (AP) — Away from the political developments that have rocketed their country into international headlines, North Korean farmers are preparing for summer with hopes the relatively good growing conditions they have had so far this year will hold until the fall harvest. "The situation right now is good," said Kim Song Ryong, chief engineer of the Migokri Cooperative Farm in Sariwon, a city about 80 kilometers (50 miles) south of Pyongyang, the capital. Migokri is one of the larger and more mechanized farms in North Korea, with about 1,850 farmers and support staff. Its sprawling paddies are covered with the light green of freshly transplanted rice plants, still only about knee high.
MALE, Maldives (AP) — A Maldives court on Wednesday sentenced a former strongman accused of plotting to overthrow the government to 19 months in prison for failing to cooperate with the police investigation. Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, who ruled the Indian Ocean archipelago state from 1978 to 2008, is the second former president to be jailed under President Yameen Abdul Gayoom's rule. He was arrested in February on charges of attempting to overthrow the government of Yameen, his half-brother. A court sentenced him to one year, seven months and six days in prison for failing to hand over his mobile phone to investigators.
MUMBAI, India (AP) — A fire raged for about five hours Wednesday in an upscale high-rise apartment building in Mumbai, India's financial and entertainment capital, injuring four people and badly damaging the top two floors of the building. Three firefighters and one resident suffered burns as 95 people were evacuated from the glass-faced building, the fire service control room said. The fire started on the top level of the 33-floor building and later engulfed the 32nd floor as well. About 150 firefighters with 16 fire engines and 10 water tankers took about five hours to extinguish the flames leaping from the building.