Putin says Kim ‘needs guarantees’

Russia's President Vladimir Putin (R) and North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un chat after the talks in Vladivostok, Russia April 25, 2019. Sputnik/Alexei Nikolsky/Kremlin via REUTERS

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said North Korean leader Kim Jong-un needs international security guarantees if he is to end his nuclear programme.

Such guarantees would need to be offered within a multinational framework, he added, following talks near Vladivostok in Russia’s far east.

Mr Kim praised the summit as a “very meaningful one-on-one exchange”.

Mr Putin said North Korea’s leader was “fairly open” and had “talked freely on all issues that were on the agenda”.

The meeting followed the breakdown of talks between the US and North Korea in February, when Mr Kim met US President Donald Trump in the Vietnamese capital Hanoi.

Those talks reportedly stalled over North Korea’s demand for full economic sanctions relief in return for some denuclearisation commitments – a deal the US was not willing to make.

Those talks, which began in 2003, involve the two Koreas as well as China, Japan, Russia and the US.

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