Kim Jong-un sends pointless letter to his new pal Donald Trump

U.S. Defence POW  MIA Accounting Agency Kelly McKeague whose agency tracks down and repatriates remains of U.S. soldiers lost on foreign battlefields speaks at an interview with Reuters in Tokyo Japan

Caskets that the US shipped to the border last month haven't been filled, despite Kim Jong Un's pledge during his June 12 summit with President Donald Trump to immediately repatriate identified remains.

In a Twitter message, Trump wrote, "A very nice note from Chairman Kim of North Korea. Great progress being made!"

Their meeting - the first between a sitting U.S. president and North Korea, led to claims that the latter would work towards dumping its nuclear weapons.

Kim expresses "invariable trust and confidence" in the president and wishes that "epochal progress" in promoting relations will "bring our next meeting forward".

In it, Mr Kim says: "I deeply appreciate the energetic and extraordinary efforts made by Your Excellency Mr President".

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo failed to make any significant progress in fleshing out the North's denuclearization process during his third visit to Pyongyang last week. Pyongyang has asked the UN Command Armistice Commission to upgrade the talks to a higher level to include a US general, South Korea's foreign ministry said.

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Returning the remains was a commitment from the 12 June summit between Kim Jong-un and Donald Trump in Singapore.

Interested in North Korea?

Separately, North Korean officials did not show up at planned talks with the United States on Thursday to discuss repatriating the remains of American soldiers killed during the 1950-53 Korean War.

The President's release of the letter comes shortly after North Korean officials failed to show up to a meeting with USA leadership.

North Korean and United States teams, as well as United Nations officials, had been due to discuss the details of repatriation.

It had been expected on Thursday at the inter-Korean truce village of Panmunjom.

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President Trump tweeted out the letter and an English translation on Thursday.

The Department of Defense estimates that North Korea is holding about 200 sets of remains from some 5,300 American military personnel believed missing in the country. Roughly 5,300 U.S. troops presumed to have been killed in the Korean war are unaccounted for.

The BBC reported speculation that North Korea may want payment for the return of the remains.

"The U.S. side had had discussions with the North with an aim to hold the talks as early as July 12, but it appeared that the North was not ready for the talks", the source told Yonhap News Agency on condition of anonymity.

The source said that Kim did not see any need to hold dialogue with Japan before his summit with South Korean President Moon Jae-in in April, instead favoring relations with the United States, China and Russian Federation.

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