US President Donald Trump has confirmed that CIA director Mike Pompeo traveled to Pyongyang for a secret meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.
Trump tweeted on Wednesday that a "good relationship" was formed at the meeting last week,
News of the visit first emerged on Tuesday.
US officials were quoted as saying the aim was to prepare a summit between Trump and Kim.
Trump had earlier alluded to high-level direct talks with Pyongyang.
But the unexpected and clandestine meeting marks the highest level US contact with North Korea since 2000.
"We have had direct talks at... extremely high levels," Trump said from Florida, where he is hosting Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
The president added that he gave his "blessing" for talks between the South and North to discuss a peace treaty to formally end the 1950-1953 Korean War.