White House 'Can't Confirm' Validity of North Korea Prisoner Release

China North Korea border

China North Korea border

President Donald Trump has ordered the Pentagon to prepare options for drawing down USA troops in South Korea, weeks before he is scheduled to hold a landmark meeting with North Korea's leader, Kim Jong Un, according to several people briefed on the deliberations.

"We can't confirm the validity of any of the reports now out about their release", Sanders said, "but we certainly would see this as a sign of good will if North Korea were to release the three Americans ahead of discussions between President Trump and Kim Jong Un".

An official peace treaty formally ending the 1950-53 Korean War, for example, might reduce the need for such a significant number of American troops to deter an attack from the North.

North Korean analysts questioned the validity of Trump's order shortly after the Times report. A meeting between Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump is expected in the coming weeks, although arrangements have yet to be announced.

Bruce Klingner, a senior research fellow for Northeast Asia at the Heritage Foundation, said, "I think having US military on the peninsula is the most tangible signal of USA resolve and commitment to our allies as possible". "We will always side with you'". According to an agreement between both nations, which expires in December, South Korea pays the USA about one billion dollars annually.

Nine aboard USA military plane destroyed in fiery crash
Mariah Majors, an employee at the Carey Hilliard's on Highway 21, said she could see smoke in the air but could not see the plane. The plane was in the air for about two miles before it crashed into a field about a quarter mile from a busy highway.

CNN, citing an unnamed source, said on Thursday the prisoners' release was imminent, adding the groundwork for the move was laid two months ago when North Korea's foreign minister traveled to Sweden and proposed the idea. He reportedly ran a trade and hotel service company in Rason, a special economic zone on North Korea's border with Russian Federation.

Kim Hak Song also worked at PUST and was detained on a similarly vague charge of "hostile acts" against North Korea. He was sentenced to 10 years of hard labor in 2016.

Six South Koreans also remain detained in the North, but their release was not on the agenda of the latest inter-Korean summit. He worked in agricultural development at an experimental farm run by the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology, which was founded in 2010 with donations from Christian groups.

The North has historically railed against the the US's presence and threatened to retaliate against the annual joint military exercises between the United States and the South.

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