CIA Director Mike Pompeo traveled to North Korea over Easter weekend for a meeting with leader Kim Jong Un, sources confirmed to CNN on Tuesday.
One source said Pompeo took only intelligence officials with him on the trip, no White House or State Department officials.
The White House declined to comment on news of the visit after The Washington Post first reported, citing two sources with direct knowledge of the trip, that Pompeo had made the top-secret visit as an envoy for President Donald Trump.
News of the secret meeting broke as Trump hosted a visit with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Florida.
Trump confirmed Tuesday while alongside Abe that the US and North Korea are having discussions at “very high levels” in preparation for an anticipated meeting between Trump and Kim.
“We have had direct talks,” the President said.
Pompeo’s visit to the isolated nation around the beginning of April came amid a major shakeup in the administration. Trump had fired Rex Tillerson as secretary of state in mid-March and nominated Pompeo to be the US’ top diplomat shortly after the White House announced the President had agreed to meet with North Korea’s leader at an unspecified date.