On Monday speaking to reporters before the summit, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told reporters in a press conference that “complete and verifiable denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula is the only outcome the United States will accept.”
On Tuesday President Trump and Kim Jong un, held the “Peace Summit,” in Singapore. At the conclusion of the summit the two leaders signed a joint statement. The full statement can be found @ the White House.
On Wednesday Secretary of State Mike Pompeo from the Hilton Hotel in Seoul, South Korea, addressed the traveling press pool off camera, his full remarks can be found @ State.gov.
One of the questions was about the words, “verifiable and irreversible.”
The reporter’s question, “You said – the day before you said it’s our only objective, our – it’s clear we want that. It’s not in the statement. Why it’s not in the statement? And the President said it will…”
Pompeo replies, “Mm-hmm, it’s in the statement. It’s in the statement. You’re just wrong about that.”
The reporter asks, “How is it in the statement? And I am also…”
Pompeo replies, ” You’re just – because “complete” encompasses verifiable and irreversible. It just – I suppose we – you could argue semantics, but let me assure you that it’s in the document.”
The two continue back and forth a couple of more times, until the reporter asks, “what is– discussed about how?”
Pompeo answers, “Just so you know, you could ask me this – I find that question insulting and ridiculous and, frankly, ludicrous. I just have to be honest with you. It’s a game and one ought not play games with serious matters like this.”
Undeterred the reporter presses and asks one more time, how will it be verified?
Pompeo answers, “Oh, we’re – they’re – the modalities are beginning to develop. There’ll be a great deal of work to do. It’s – there’s a long way to go, there’s much to think about, but don’t say silly things. No, don’t, don’t. It’s not productive. It’s not productive to do that, to say silly things. It’s just – it’s unhelpful.”
The reporter does try one more time, “Well, I think…”
Pompeo interrupts, “It’s unhelpful for your readers, your listeners, for the world. It’s – because it doesn’t remotely reflect the American position or the understandings that the North Koreans have either.”
The four-hundred and thirty-five word joint statement talks about denuclearzation 3 times:
- Chairman Kim Jong Un reaffirmed his firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
- Convinced that the establishment of new U.S.–DPRK relations will contribute to the peace and prosperity of the Korean Peninsula and of the world, and recognizing that mutual confidence building can promote the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, President Trump and Chairman Kim Jong Un state the following:
- Reaffirming the April 27, 2018 Panmunjom Declaration, the DPRK commits to work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
The words verifiable and irreversible appear zero.