Trump praises rapport with Kim, hails dismantling of N.Korea site

North Korea has started'dismantling a rocket launch site

North Korea has begun dismantling key facilities at a site used to develop engines for ballistic missiles, according to an analysis of satellite imagery of the location, the first significant step towards denuclearisation following last month's historic summit between Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump.

Images sent to CBN News by 38 North show North Korea's main satellite launch facility is starting to be dismantled.

The analysis from 38 North, a North Korea-focused website affiliated with Washington-based non-profit Henry L. Stimson Center, found that Pyongyang, in recent days, started tearing down a rail-mounted processing building where rockets are assembled before being moved to launch pad and a rocket engine test stand.

According to The Associated Press, analysts say images show a rocket engine test stand and another building being razed by North Korean forces. "One corner has been completely dismantled and the parts can be seen lying on the ground", 38 North reports.

Kim told both Mr. Trump and South Korean President Moon Jae-in that "he was prepared to denuclearize", Pompeo said.

But as North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has moved to improve relations with the United States, China and South Korea, concerns have grown that the policy of "maximum pressure" through sanctions and isolation, is losing steam.

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Mr. Trump was likely referring to an article in The Washington Post on Sunday that claimed the president was frustrated with the lack of immediate progress.

North Korea reportedly believes it has made sufficient concessions - namely its freeze on weapons testing, the destruction of the Punggye-ri nuclear test site, and the imminent return of the remains of USA war dead - to warrant the start of talks on a peace treaty. "Japan is happy, all of Asia is happy", Trump wrote earlier Monday.

Officials estimate the work started in the last two weeks.

The Trump administration has maintained optimism about the diplomatic process aimed at persuading the North to abandon its nuclear weapons program, insisting there's "no rush" to reach a final deal.

"This is consistent with North Korea's public line, which is that its successful test program is now transitioning to mass production of nuclear and missile systems", he said.

In the lead up to Trump's face-to-face meeting with Kim, the U.S. president showed his masterful deal making skills in action.

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"They've removed the super-structure on the static engine test site, but they've kept the concrete, as far as we know", he said.

After an problematic meeting in Pyongyang involving Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and a team of North Korean officials, the North criticized the USA for making unilateral demands of North Korea while ignoring Pyongyang's expectations, with a peace treaty being high on the country's list of demands.

North Korea has carried out a total of six nuclear tests, the most recent of which took place in September a year ago.

"What we have been seeing is certain countries wanting to do waivers, certain countries saying, 'Let's lift sanctions, ' certain countries wanting to do more", she said.

38 North's Town said movement toward a peace regime, including an announcement declaring an end to the Korean War, remained high on the North's agenda for its talks with the U.S.

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