Madeleine Albright: Trump shouldn't meet with Kim Jong Un
© Getty Images

Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright on Tuesday chided President Trump for saying that he would be "honored" to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un under the right circumstances. 

"A president doesn't go to a country without any preparation, and 'honored' would definitely be the wrong way to discuss somebody who is keeping his people in poverty and starving and control," Albright said on CNN's "The Lead" with Jake Tapper

Trump told Bloomberg in an interview on Monday that he is willing to meet with the North Korean dictator if circumstances permit. That comment came after the president referred to Kim as a "smart cookie" in an interview with CBS's "Face the Nation" that aired Sunday.


Albright said that Trump appeared too eager to develop personal relationships with world leaders without realizing the political weight and repercussions that his words carry.

"I think that part of the issue is that President Trump seems to believe that he can have just one-on-one relationships. And maybe that's possible in business, but that is not something that is possible as president of the United States," she said. "This is not a matter of charming, by saying you're 'honored' and he's a 'smart cookie.' "

Tensions have heightened between the U.S. and North Korea in recent weeks as concerns grow over Pyongyang's advancing weapons programs.

Trump said last week in an interview with Reuters that a "major, major conflict" between the U.S. and North Korea was possible, though he said a peaceful solution to the tensions was preferred. 

Trump has often billed himself as a dealmaker who is able to take his experience in the business world into the realm of politics and international relations. 

Albright, who served as secretary of State under President Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonCourt dismisses GOP suit over proxy voting in House Trump is a complication for Republican hopes in Virginia Pence v. Biden on China: Competing but consistent visions MORE, has been a vocal critic of Trump since he was a presidential candidate last year.