North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Sunday he's hopeful a letter President Trump sent to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un would provide a "good foundation" for "discussions with the North Koreans to denuclearize the peninsula."

Details: Pompeo made the comments during a media briefing a day after Pyongyang's state-run news agency KCNA praised the letter's "excellent content," without specifying details. "Appreciating the political judging faculty and extraordinary courage of President Trump, Kim Jong Un said that he would seriously contemplate the interesting content," it said.

Why it matters: Relations between the U.S. and North Korea have been strained since Trump and Kim's Hanoi summit collapsed over denuclearization and sanctions relief issues in February.

What they're saying: Pompeo said they'd been "working to lay the foundations" for discussions since Hanoi. "We think we’re in a better place. ...  We’re literally prepared to begin at a moment’s notice if the North Koreans indicate that they are prepared for those discussions," he said.

The big picture: The development comes after Chinese President Xi Jinping met with Kim to discuss the political situation over the Korean Peninsula and reached unspecified consensus on important issues, per AP. Trump has said he'll have an "extended meeting" with Xi on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Japan, which he and Pompeo will attend.

  • Trump and Pompeo are due to travel to South Korea afterward for talks with South Korean President Moon Jae-in, per Reuters.

Go deeper: Global hotspots: North Korea and Iran

Go deeper

Updated 6 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 33,642,602 — Total deaths: 1,007,769 — Total recoveries: 23,387,825Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 7,191,061 — Total deaths: 205,998 — Total recoveries: 2,813,305 — Total tests: 103,155,189Map.
  3. Health: Americans won't take Trump's word on the vaccine, Axios-Ipsos poll finds.
  4. Politics: 7 former FDA commissioners say Trump is undermining agency's credibility
  5. States: NYC's coronavirus positivity rate spikes to highest since June.
  6. Sports: Tennessee Titans close facility amid NFL's first coronavirus outbreak.
  7. World: U.K. beats previous record for new coronavirus cases.
  8. Work: United States of burnout — Asian American unemployment spikes amid pandemic

In photos: Deadly wildfires devastate California's wine country

The Shady Fire ravages a home as it approaches Santa Rosa in Napa County, California, on Sept. 28. The blaze is part of the massive Glass Fire Complex, which has razed 46,600 acres at 2% containment. Photo: Samuel Corum/Agence France-Presse/AFP via Getty Images

Some 18,700 firefighters are battling 27 major blazes across California, including in the heart of the wine country, where one mega-blaze claimed the lives of three people and forced thousands of others to evacuate this week.

The big picture: 8,155 wildfires have burned across a record 3.86 million acres, killing 26 people and razing almost 7,900 structures in California this year, per Cal Fire. Just like the deadly blazes of 2017, the wine country has become a wildfires epicenter. Gov. Gavin Newsom has declared a state of emergency in Napa, Sonoma, and Shasta counties.

Mike Allen, author of AM
Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

The first Trump v. Biden presidential debate was a hot mess

Photos: Jim Watson and Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

This debate was like the country: Everybody’s talking. Nobody’s listening. Nothing is learned. It’s a mess.

  • We were told President Trump would be savage. Turned out, that was a gross understatement. Even the moderator, Fox News' Chris Wallace, got bulldozed.

Why it matters: Honestly, who the hell knows?