North Korea Offered Little Help to Identify Remains

Initial forensic analysis suggested the remains were likely to be of American servicemen, the US military said. Vice President Mike Pence is set to receive the remains in Hawaii.

Foreign-policy experts have remained skeptical about North Korea's intentions, given its history on withdrawing from prior agreements.

More than 35,000 Americans were killed on the Korean Peninsula during the war and around 7,700 of them are still considered missing, including 5,300 in North Korea alone. Experts say the North likely wants a declaration of the end of the Korean War as part of United States security assurances. He said this was an worldwide effort to bring closure for families.

Hanwell Kaakimaka said the story he heard from his dad was that his uncle was injured and was being brought back from the front when Chinese troops overran his uncle's unit's position and attacked its convoy.

North Korea had told US officials a few times in recent years that it had about 200 sets of USA war remains, although none was "already identified".

How will the remains be identified?

A formal repatriation ceremony took place in South Korea before the boxes were put on a flight to Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam in Hawaii.

FILE - A soldier carries a casket containing a remain of a USA soldier who was killed in the Korean War, during a ceremony at Osan Air Base in Pyeongtaek, South Korea, July 27, 2018.

"It is Kim doing exactly what he said he was going to do". "But even if they are, you still have a nuclear deterrent, so it would still be a huge risk for the U.S.to try to attack". Four U.S. fighter jets flew low in a tribute.

"We don't know who's in those boxes, " Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis told reporters Friday at the Pentagon.

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However, according to the New York Times , the US State Department did not deny that its diplomats had taken part in any talks. They added that there were "very positive signals" from the meeting, and that it was held in a "friendly atmosphere".

The official, who discussed previously undisclosed aspects of the remains issue on condition of anonymity, said it probably will take months if not years to fully determine individual identities from the remains, which have not yet been confirmed by US specialists to be those of American servicemen.

Satellite images show that North Korea is behaving like a country working hard on its missile program, not a country preparing to disarm, the Washington Post reports, citing "officials familiar with the intelligence". "And the military says that it has already notified the soldier's family that his dog tag has been found".

The two discussed various bilateral issues, officials said, but neither Beijing, which supported North Korea in the war, nor Seoul confirmed whether they discussed a declaration ending the war.

The North Koreans provided enough specifics about where each suspected body was found that US officials have matched them to specific battles fought from 1950 to 1951, though not necessarily individuals, he said.

"Generally speaking what I can tell you is that the remains are consistent with the remains we have recovered in North Korea", John Byrd, director of analysis for the U.S. Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency told a news conference before the ceremony. "Thank you to Kim Jong Un".

Trump last week thanked Kim for keeping the promise he made as part of their talks about North Korea's denuclearization.

The report casts further doubt on President Donald Trump's claims of victory last month in disarmament talks with North Korea. The US has repeatedly rejected global calls for sanctions relief on North Korea.

Critics caution the move is largely symbolic, since the facility can easily be rebuilt. But many experts say those are neither irrevocable nor serious steps that could show the country is honest about denuclearization.

The remains may include UK casualties and the DNA samples will be used to support identification, over a number of years, to make sure any UK personnel identified are ultimately given military funerals at the United Nations cemetery in the Republic of Korea. And it is foolish to expect that they would do so - at the outset of talks, he said. The source previously told CNN that if a peace treaty to replace the armistice agreement that ended the Korean War did not ensure the survival of the current North Korean regime, it could be the end of denuclearization talks.

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