Trump talks to reporters during a meeting with Slovakia's PM Peter Pellegrini in the Oval Office at the White House. File photo. Reuters
North Korean missile launches over the past week have not affected Donald Trump’s relationship with Kim Jong Un, the US president said on Friday, in a change of course after initially expressing his dissatisfaction.
Pyongyang fired two short-range missiles on Thursday following an earlier drill the previous Saturday — the first in 18 months.
The North had not launched any missiles since November 2017, shortly before once reclusive Kim embarked on diplomatic overtures.
“I don’t consider that a breach of trust at all. And, you know, at some point I may. But at this point no,” Trump said in an interview with Politico.
“These were short-range missiles and very standard stuff. Very standard.”
Twenty-four hours earlier, however, Trump showed his irritation and impatience on an issue where he hopes to succeed while all his predecessors — Republicans and Democrats — have failed.
“Nobody’s happy about it,” he told reporters, in reaction to the launches.
“We’ll see what happens,” Trump added. “I know they want to negotiate, they’re talking about negotiating. But I don’t think they are ready to negotiate.”
Will the US president at some point lose faith in Kim? He has met twice with the North Korean leader and claimed that the two have a special friendship and even “love.”
“I mean it’s possible that at some point I will, but right now not at all,” he told Politico.
The first face-to-face historic meeting between the two men in June 2018 in Singapore produced only a vague statement about denuclearization, allowing both sides to make very different interpretations of it.
February’s second summit, in Hanoi, broke up without a deal after they failed to agree on what Pyongyang would be willing to give up in exchange for sanctions relief.
Since then, Kim has accused Washington of acting in “bad faith” and given it until the end of the year to change its approach.
North Korea’s Rodong Sinmun newspaper, the mouthpiece of the ruling party, devoted its entire front page and half of page two to the launch on Friday, with 16 pictures, the main one of Kim watching the launch from a camouflaged shelter.
Despite recent threats by the North to seek a new path, the nature and presentation of the two recent launches demonstrate that Pyongyang does not intend to walk away from talks any time soon, analysts say.
On Friday at the United Nations, 70 countries urged North Korea to scrap its nuclear weapons, ballistic missiles and related programs, decrying the “undiminished threat” posed to world peace.
Signatories included the United States and South Korea, as well as nations in Asia, Latin America, Africa and Europe.
Russia and China, supporters of Pyongyang, did not sign the document drafted by France.
According to a diplomatic source, about 15 countries asked to sign on to the request for North Korean disarmament after the new missile firings.Agence France-Presse
The missiles, launched from near the coastal city of Wonsan, flew about 430 km (267 miles) out over the sea, reaching an altitude of 50 km (30 miles), before splashing down,
North Korea will hold a plenary session of its ruling party’s central committee on Wednesday, a day after leader Kim Jong Un chaired a politburo meeting to discuss ways to make progress under the “prevailing tense situation,” state media reported.
US President Donald Trump on Saturday invited North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to meet for a historic handshake at the demilitarised zone (DMZ) that divides the Korean peninsula, and said he would have "no problem" stepping over the border.
After shaking hands with Kim over the line that marks where their two countries and their allies fought each other to a standstill in the 1950-53 Korean War, Trump walked for several steps into North Korean territory, before another handshake.
Al Qasimi Publications (AQP) has released a collection of plays written by His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, translated into the ancient Russian language.
The trashing away of the mindset and practice of the manufacture, distribution and use of unsafe food packages is everyone’s responsibility. For one, everyone is a consumer and the solution to the enormous global problem brought about by these items that deteriorate not only one’s health and the entire biodiversity, starts with one’s self.
The ISPR statement said that a local ANA commander opposite Arundu, Chitral, had requested help for the 46 soldiers —including five officers — as they were unable to hold their military posts along the Pak-Afghan International Border due to the evolving security situation in Afghanistan.