White House: Pres. Trump receives new letter from Kim Jong Un

Request for sanctions relief comes days after a UN report alleged North Korea has continued its missile programme

The White House confirmed Trump had received a new letter from Kim but did not reveal its content.

At his landmark summit with President Donald Trump in June, the North's leader Kim Jong Un signed up to a vague commitment to "denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula" - a far cry from long-standing USA demands for complete, verifiable and irreversible disarmament.

"(We're) certainly open to that discussion, but there isn't a meeting planned".

Vice President Mike Pence said that the ceremony for the returned remains of 55 American soldiers from the Korean War was "deeply moving".

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"Chairman Kim made a commitment to denuclearize", Pompeo told reporters.

Byrd was present when North Korean officials turned over the 55 boxes at Wonsan airport in North Korea last Friday, and he was among the USA government specialists who made a further preliminary examination of the contents after the boxes were flown to Osan air base in South Korea the same day.

More than 7,700 US troops remain unaccounted for from the Korea War.

Flag draped transfer cases with the remains of American soldiers repatriated from North Korea are seen during a repatriation ceremony after arriving at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Honolulu, Hawaii, on August 1, 2018.

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Trump has said repeatedly the deal he reached with Kim has been positive since North Korea has maintained a freeze on nuclear and missile tests and has begun returning USA war dead remains.

A US defense official told VOA North Korea has provided nearly no information to help identify the individuals, and that the process could take months or years to complete.

Last week, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told senators that Pyongyang was continuing to produce fuel for nuclear bombs.

Air Force General John Hyten, who as commander of the U.S. Strategic Command oversees America's nuclear forces, said North Korea had clearly demonstrated its commitment to halt flight-testing missiles since none had launched since November.

The Washington Post on Tuesday reported that US intelligence officials suspect that North Korea is continuing to build new missiles in the same research facility that manufactured the country's ballistic missiles capable of reaching the United States.

But he declined to comment on intelligence about any other North Korean research activities when speaking to reporters on Wednesday. The day of the transfer coincided with the 65th anniversary of the 1953 armistice agreement that put a temporary stop to the war between the North and South.

The United States and North Korea conducted joint searches from 1996 until 2005, when Washington halted the operations, citing concerns about the safety of its personnel as Pyongyang stepped up its nuclear programme. Add North Korea as an interest to stay up to date on the latest North Korea news, video, and analysis from ABC News.

McKeague did not say whether the United States would continue reimbursing North Korea, should field operations in the country resume.

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