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Kim Jong-un speaks Friday to the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea, in Pyongyang. Photo: North Korean government via AP

Kim Jong-un may have learned the art of dealing with President Trump: Give him a win — or at least what he thinks is a win, or can spin as a win.

Why it matters, via BBC: "The surprise announcement comes as North Korea prepares for historic talks with South Korea and the U.S.": Kim is due to meet his South Korean counterpart next week, and President Trump by June.

What happened: North Korean leader Kim Jong-un announced the country will stop conducting nuclear tests and launches of intercontinental ballistic missiles starting April 21, and shut down a nuclear test site in the north side of the country. Per BBC, Kim said further tests were unnecessary because Pyongyang's nuclear capabilities had been 'verified.'

Trump tweets: "This is very good news for North Korea and the World - big progress! Look forward to our Summit. ... Progress being made for all!"

Be smart, from a former National Security Council official under President George W. Bush: "Not a big deal to pause testing nuclear or missiles when summit is coming ... Totally reversible. Eye wash."

Victor Cha — senior adviser and Korea Chair at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, who was Trump's candidate for ambassador to South Korea — tells Axios future editor Steve LeVine that the shift isn't as abrupt as it looks:

  • "They have already stated that they would halt all testing while in dialogue. This statement formalizes that promise."
  • "[T]he statement talks about a test ban, no first use, and no transfer — all the trappings of a 'responsible' nuclear weapons state (which is what they ultimately wanted to be accepted as)."
  • "Thus, this is not a denuclearization statement, it is a statement that DPRK [North Korea] can be a responsible nuclear weapons state."
  • The key sentence: "No one believes this, but if they can get Trump to agree, that is all they need."

What to watch for, per Cha: "[T]he glaring unanswered question in all of this is what the U.S. will give in return for these up front N.K. concessions."

  • "We know what we want from DPRK, but no one is scrutinizing what the US administration is thinking of giving up — sanctions? peace treaty? normalization? exercises? missile defense?"
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Go deeper

Scoop: Gina Haspel almost resigned over plan to install Kash Patel as CIA deputy

Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

CIA Director Gina Haspel almost resigned in early December after President Trump cooked up a hasty plan to install loyalist Kash Patel, a former aide to Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), as her deputy, according to three senior administration officials with direct knowledge of the matter.

Why it matters: The revelations stunned national security officials and almost blew up the leadership of the world's most powerful spy agency.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Coronavirus deaths reach 4,000 per day as hospitals remain in crisis mode — CDC warns highly transmissible coronavirus variant could become dominant in U.S. in March.
  2. Politics: Biden says, "We will manage the hell out of" vaccine distribution — Biden taps ex-FDA chief to lead Operation Warp Speed amid rollout of COVID plan — Widow of GOP congressman-elect who died of COVID-19 will run to fill his seat.
  3. Vaccine: Battling Black mistrust of the vaccines"Pharmacy deserts" could become vaccine deserts — Instacart to give $25 to shoppers who get vaccine.
  4. Economy: Unemployment filings explode againFed chair: No interest rate hike coming any time soon —  Inflation rose more than expected in December.
  5. World: WHO team arrives in China to investigate pandemic origins.

NRA declares bankruptcy, says it will reincorporate in Texas

Wayne LaPierre of the National Rifle Association (NRA) speaks during CPAC in 2016. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

The National Rifle Association said Friday it has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and will seek to reincorporate in Texas, calling New York, where it is currently registered, a "toxic political environment."

The big picture: The move comes just months after New York Attorney General Letitia James filed a lawsuit to dissolve the NRA, alleging the group committed fraud by diverting roughly $64 million in charitable donations over three years to support reckless spending by its executives.