Trump administration already has long said that if the North Koreans weren’t ready to discuss giving up their nuclear program, there was no reason for the two countries to hold negotiations. Still, North Korea’s government has not said anything publicly at all about a meeting with Trump. Neither of the officials would say when or how the contact took place, nor in what location. The Trump administration has not said where the meeting will place or whether a location has been determined, nor has an exact date been set. The contacts between Pyongyang and Washington come as Trump’s new national security adviser, former UN Ambassador John Bolton, prepares to start work at the White House formally on Monday. Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo and a team at the CIA have been working through intelligence back-channels to make preparations for the summit, the officials said. The North Koreans are pushing to have the meeting in their capital, Pyongyang.
As recently as this weekend, Trump told associates he was looking forward to the summit, which he agreed to on the spot when presented the invitation from Kim. Trump is due to meet in two weeks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at Mar-a-Lago.