British diplomat: North Korean officials reading 'Fire and Fury' to learn more about Trump
© Greg Nash

North Korean officials are turning to Michael Wolff's “Fire and Fury,” an exposé on the Trump administration, to gain more insight into the Trump White House, according to longtime former British negotiator Jonathan Powell. 

“They were very keen to study Donald Trump when I was there in December,” Powell told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour Thursday.

Powell, who according to CNN frequently visits Pyongyang to meet with officials in Kim Jong Un's government, said they “were reading ‘Art of the Deal,’ and wanted to discuss the book and what it showed about the president.”

“When I went back at the beginning of this year, they were reading ‘Fire and Fury’ – all on PDFs, not buying the book itself, and trying to discuss what that told them about Trump too,” Powell told the news outlet.


CNN’s David Chalian said reading such books is to be expected for foreign governments following Powell’s remarks, despite President TrumpDonald John TrumpDavis: Supreme Court decision is bad news for Trump, good news for Vance Meadows trying to root out suspected White House leakers by feeding them info: Axios Pressley hits DeVos over reopening schools: 'I wouldn't trust you to care for a house plant let alone my child' MORE denouncing “Fire and Fury” as a "fake book of a mentally deranged author.” 

“I imagine foreign governments all over the world are doing this to gain some insight,” Chalian said, before adding that news outlets do it too.

The remarks come after news of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei sharing a photo of himself reading the controversial tell-all book on the president's administration on Friday, just days after Trump backed out of a nuclear accord with the country.

Trump has in the past repeatedly hit Wolff over the book, which contains several explosive claims about his personal life and administration.