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‘There Will Be No Concessions Made’ in North Korea Talks, Pompeo Says

CIA director insists president 'isn't doing this for theater,' but is 'going to solve a problem' by meeting with Kim Jong-un

President Donald Trump will make “no concessions” because he is “going to solve a problem” by meeting with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director Mike Pompeo said on “Fox News Sunday.”

“President Trump isn’t doing this for theater. He’s going to solve a problem,” said Pompeo (shown above). “But what’s most important is what’s discussed and the clarity and the strength and resolve of this president and this administration to achieve the outcome that Americans so desperately deserve.”

Trump stunned the nation Thursday when he accepted Kim’s request to meet with him “as soon as possible,” at an unspecified time and location, after Kim made significant concessions.

The North Korean leader agreed to halt nuclear and ballistic missile tests while preparations for the meeting proceed and accepted continued joint military exercises between the U.S. and South Korea.

Pompeo noted that Trump “has built an enormous coalition aimed at a singular outcome, which is the denuclearization of the peninsula.” When asked whether Trump will make any concessions while preparing for his meeting with Kim, Pompeo replied, “Make no mistake about it — while these negotiations are going on, there will be no concessions made.”

“The activity of this administration to disrupt the North Korean economy, to put pressure on North Korea, to galvanize the world in a way that you have countries from the Middle East to Europe and Asia placing sanctions on the North Korean regime — those will continue,” Pompeo promised. “And we’ll see how the talks and the negotiations proceed.”

Pompeo said that the CIA has “an important role” in preparing Trump for his diplomatic conversations with North Korean officials. The CIA director said he will remind the president of North Korea’s history and the “deceit of this regime,” emphasizing the importance of entering these discussions “understanding those risks” and “the nature of Kim Jong-un himself.”

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“Never before have we had the North Koreans in a position where their economy was at such risk [and] their leadership was under such pressure that they would begin conversations on the terms that Kim Jong-un has conceded to,” Pompeo said.

Vocal Trump critic Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) offered rare praise for the president and his approach to North Korea Sunday during an interview on NBC News’ “Meet the Press.”

“Let’s just start with what the Trump administration has done. They’re moving toward diplomacy. I think that’s a really good move. There is no military-only solution to the problems presented by North Korea,” Warren said. “I want to see our president succeed, because if he succeeds America succeeds. The world is safer.”

Related: Conventional Wisdom on N. Korea Has ‘Gone Out the Window’ Under Trump

Warren warned, however, that “these are very complex negotiations” that require a fully staffed administration. The senator failed to note, however, that Trump’s Department of State and other agencies crucial to North Korean strategy aren’t fully staffed yet because Senate Democrats have been blocking and slow-walking nearly all of the president’s nominees.

“But these are very complex negotiations, and what I’m concerned about in these negotiations is we have a State Department that’s just been decimated. We don’t have an ambassador right now to South Korea. We don’t have an assistant secretary for this whole region,” Warren said.

“And that really matters, because it means you don’t have the people who understand the economics, who speak the language, who know the history, in order to kind of have that country to country before the leaders meet,” she said.

PoliZette writer Kathryn Blackhurst can be reached at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter.

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PoliZette writer Kathryn Blackhurst can be reached at [email protected].