News

UPDATE: Trump Waiting To See If Kim Jong Un Will “Do The Right Thing”

“Sadly, based on the tremendous anger and open hostility displayed in your most recent statement, I feel it is inappropriate, at this time, to have this long planned meeting,” Trump wrote.

People watch a TV screen showing file footage of U.S. President Donald Trump, left, and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un during a news program at the Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea on May 24.

Updated at 1:30 p.m. ET

___

President Donald Trump declares he is “waiting” to see if North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will again “engage in constructive dialogue.”

Trump opened the door for diplomacy Thursday just hours after he canceled a summit with Kim scheduled for next month in Singapore.

But he insisted that Kim reach out, placing the blame on the North Korean leader for the collapse of negotiations.

He also said that until that happened, tough sanctions on Pyongyang would continue and the U.S.-led “maximum pressure campaign is continuing.”

Trump and Kim had been slated to meet June 12 for what White House officials had hoped would be a historic diplomatic breakthrough for the president.

They advised that the summit could be rescheduled.

__________

President Trump has called off a highly anticipated June 12 summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

“Sadly, based on the tremendous anger and open hostility displayed in your most recent statement, I feel it is inappropriate, at this time, to have this long planned meeting,” Trump wrote in a letter to Kim.

Trump’s decision comes hours after North Korean Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son Hui, in remarks carried on the country’s official KCNA news service, said it would not “beg the U.S. for dialogue” and warned that it could make Washington “taste an appalling tragedy.”

Choe also called Vice President Pence a “political dummy” and criticized Pence’s recent suggestion that North Korea could end up like Libya if doesn’t come to the bargaining table.

“As a person involved in the U.S. affairs, I cannot suppress my surprise at such ignorant and stupid remarks gushing out from the mouth of the U.S. vice president,” Choe said.

In calling off the meeting, Trump said Kim had missed an opportunity, but he left the door open to renewed talks in the future.

“The world, and North Korea in particular, has lost a great opportunity for lasting peace and great prosperity and wealth,” Trump wrote. “If you change your mind having to do with this most important summit, please do not hesitate to call me or write.”

Trump also returned to past form, boasting of the size of the U.S. nuclear arsenal.

“You talk about your nuclear capabilities,” Trump wrote. “But ours are so massive and powerful that I pray to God they will never have to be used.”

Earlier in the day, North Korea made a public show of destroying its nuclear testing grounds. But the country’s weapons program remains intact.

“We can also make the U.S. taste an appalling tragedy it has neither experienced nor even imagined up to now,” Choe warned in her statement.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Share