Trump calls latest statement from North Korea 'very good news'

Angelica Greene
May 25, 2018

US President Donald Trump has said his summit with North Korea's leader could still happen on 12 June, despite earlier cancelling the meeting. It could even be the 12th.

On Thursday we learned that Pyongyang was making other moves behind the scenes that suggested they wouldn't follow through with the summit.

"So at this point, South Korea's position on holding trilateral talks after the direct meeting between Trump and Kim is likely to remain unchanged".

Putin said of Trump's cancellation announcement, "In Russia we took this news with regret".

China had backed the summit, though analysts suggested that Beijing was likely anxious that Trump and Kim could end up striking a deal that would harm its strategic interests in the region.

He and his hawkish administration talked of "denuclearisng the Korean peninsula" as a readily-navigated one-way street that simply involved North Korea mothballing its weapons.

The comments came after Trump cancelled the high stakes summit in dramatic style in a formal letter, not a tweet, blaming "tremendous anger and open hostility" in a recent statement from the North.

Mr. Trump is also wrong that Democrats have defended MS-13 members.

April 18: Trump confirms that Mike Pompeo, then the Central Intelligence Agency chief, had met secretly with Kim in North Korea and said "a good relationship was formed" heading into the adversaries' anticipated summit. We're talking to them [North Korea] now. They very much want to do it. Trump should study this statement to see how the diplomatic game works.

Defense Secretary James Mattis also sounded an optimistic note, telling reporters at the Pentagon there is "possibly some good news" about the summit, saying that "if our diplomats can pull it off" it may be back on.

However, Trump's letter added that the talks could still go ahead "at a later date".

President Trump's attack on Democrats came the same day he said the summit with North Korea could still happen
President Trump's attack on Democrats came the same day he said the summit with North Korea could still happen

It was personally addressed to Mr Kim.

Trump's decision, which officials said Thursday was delivered in a letter directed to Kim Jong Un, prompted questions and dismay from world leaders.

But the North's Kim Kye Gwan countered that their angry statements were "just a backlash in response to harsh words from the U.S. side that has been pushing for a unilateral denuclearisation".

What Mr Trump was referring to?

Hong Min, director of the North Korean studies division at the Korean Institute for National Unification, said it did not look like the USA consulted South Korea over the cancellation.

Yesterday Pyongyang hardened its rhetoric by attacking US Vice President Mike Pence as "ignorant and stupid".

This time, it appears Trump at least slept on the decision, but it was still a dizzying reversal. The White House even unveiled a commemorative coin with the profiles of Trump and Kim to herald the "peace talks". They stressed, however, there was a "backdoor that's open still". "For the time being, China would prefer a stable status quo in the region, with North Korea on its side". Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi was deposed and killed by NATO-backed militants after halting his nascent nuclear program.

Bremmer fears North Korea could soon being testing intercontinental missiles again. It is insistent it will not engage in any peace process that jeopardises its leadership or its survival as a state.

"I am deeply concerned by the cancellation of the planned meeting in Singapore between the President of the United States and the leader of the DPRK", he said. "It's clear he didn't know what he was getting into", she said of Trump. "We would like to make known to the USA side once again that we have the intent to sit with the USA side to solve problem regardless of ways at any time".

"Although China publicly says that it is fully following the United Nations sanctions against North Korea, it will ease the sanction compared to the past in the process of improving the relations with North Korea", said Seo Jeong-kyung, a professor with the Sungkyun Institute of China Studies in Seoul.

"If and when Kim Jong-un chooses to engage in constructive dialogue and actions I am waiting", Trump said.

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