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

Before talks with North Korea can progress, the U.S. must officially declare the Korean War over, the New York Times' David Sanger and William Broad report.

The big picture: While President Trump has maintained that his meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un was a success, according to the Times, the regime is refusing to provide documents of its nuclear weapons, stockpiles, and production sites.

The bottom line: This standoff could ultimately stall how the two countries move forward, if at all.

  • North Korea is hesitant to provide a declaration of its total nuclear capabilities with the fear it could give the U.S. "information to target any pre-emptive strikes in the future." The regime's state-run newspaper, Rodon Sinmun, said the U.S.' proclamation is "the demand of our time," per the Times.
  • The concern with declaring the Korean war over — as it was "halted with a 1953 armistice but never officially brought to a close" — is that it would look as though Trump was "outmaneuvered" by Kim, the NYT reports.

For many experts, the inability to progress with talks isn't all that surprising. Joseph Nye, who wrote the first assessment of North Korea's weapons program for the National Intelligence Council in 1993, told the Times: "The North Koreans have lied to us consistently for nearly 30 years. ... Trump is in a long tradition of American presidents who have been taken to the cleaners."

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Biden holds first phone call with Putin, raises Navalny arrest

Putin takes a call in 2017. Photo: Handout/Anadolu Agency/Getty

President Biden on Tuesday held his first call since taking office with Vladimir Putin, pressing the Russian president on the arrest of opposition leader Alexey Navalny and the Russia-linked hack on U.S. government agencies.

The state of play: Biden also raised arms control, bounties allegedly placed on U.S. troops in Afghanistan and the war in Ukraine, according to a White House readout. The statement said Biden and Putin agreed maintain "consistent communication," and that Biden stressed the U.S. would "act firmly in defense of its national interests in response to actions by Russia that harm us or our allies."

Biden signs racial equity executive orders

Joe Biden prays at Grace Lutheran Church in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on September 3, 2020, in the aftermath of the police shooting of Jacob Blake. PHOTO: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

President Joe Biden on Tuesday signed executive orders on housing and ending the Justice Department's use of private prisons as part of what the White House is calling his “racial equity agenda.”

The big picture: Biden needs the support of Congress to push through police reform or new voting rights legislation. The executive orders serve as his down payment to immediately address systemic racism while he focuses on the pandemic.