Los Angeles Times

US and North Korea trade friendly gestures, and critiques, in torturous diplomatic dance

President Donald Trump has again exchanged friendly letters with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, even as his top diplomat attempted this weekend in Asia to fortify international pressure on the nuclear-armed country to give up its weaponry.

Secretary of State Michael Pompeo Saturday smiled and shook hands with his North Korean counterpart at a regional conference in Singapore, just before Trump's letter was handed over. Minutes later, with Pompeo gone, the North Korean foreign minister, Ri Yong Ho, unleashed a stinging critique of Washington and the sort of demands that Pompeo came to deliver.

The back-and-forth illustrated the

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