Both had their lights on, and they were connected with hoses, leading the ministry to "strongly suspect" that they were engaged in a forbidden high-seas fuel transfer in violation of United Nations Security Council sanctions on North Korea. Kim is in NY for talks with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, becoming the most senior North Korean official to visit the U.S. since 2000. -North Korea summit scheduled for June 12.
The news follows the White House revealing on Tuesday that it plans to continue to "actively prepare" for the recently scrapped summit between Trump and Kim.
Kim Yong Chol is a powerful surrogate for Kim Jong Un.
Moscow said Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov would travel to North Korea on Thursday to discuss Pyongyang's nuclear program.
He and Kim Jong Un's sister, Kim Yo Jong, were the only two officials to join the North Korean leader at the two inter-Korean summits.
North Korean envoy Kim Yong Chol arrives at a hotel in NY, U.S., May 30, 2018.
The latest warning about malware, called Joanap and Brambul, was issued Tuesday as North Korea leader Kim Jong Un dispatched one of his top advisers to NY. "North Korea", a source in Washington said.
A "pre-advance" team of US officials has also traveled to Singapore to meet with North Koreans there, the White House said.
North Korea's position going into the meetings with Pompeo in NY, meanwhile, was that a pledge of denuclearization alone should open the way to economic relief, said the official, who is familiar with the talks and spoke on condition of anonymity. He was linked by U.S intelligence to a cyber attack on Sony Pictures in 2014.
Separately on Wednesday at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, Admiral Harry Harris, the outgoing head of U.S. Pacific Command who is Trump's pick to be the ambassador to South Korea, said North Korea remained the United States' most imminent threat.
This undated file photo distributed on September 3, 2017, by the North Korean government shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un conducting an inspection at an undisclosed location.