North Korea’s Kim says US should reach nuclear deal by end of year

Getty Images

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has laid down an end-of-year marker for the United States to agree to terms for a nuclear deal while signaling he may agree to a third summit with President Trump.

Kim said that he will wait “till the end of this year” for the U.S. to decide to be more flexible in negotiations, North Korea’s Korean Central News Agency reported Saturday, according to Reuters.

“It is essential for the U.S. to quit its current calculation method and approach us with a new one,” Kim was quoted as saying during a speech to the Supreme People’s Assembly, the country’s rubber-stamp legislature.{mosads}

Trump responded to Kim’s comments Saturday morning on Twitter, writing that “our personal relationship remains very good” and that “a third Summit would be good in that we fully understand where we each stand.”

“I look forward to the day, which could be soon, when Nuclear Weapons and Sanctions can be removed, and then watching North Korea become one of the most successful nations of the World!” he added.

Trump’s second summit with Kim, held in late February in Vietnam, ended abruptly while failing to produce any agreement for denuclearization following months of negotiations over the country’s missile and nuclear programs.

Their previous meeting, which took place in Singapore in June, was hailed as an opportunity to establish goodwill but also did not produce a specific deal to lift sanctions in exchange for Pyongyang abandoning its nuclear and missile efforts.

Trump said Thursday that he wants to keep sanctions on North Korea while he works toward resuming talks with Kim following their latest meeting.

“We want sanctions to remain in place,” Trump told reporters during an Oval Office meeting with South Korean President Moon Jae-in. Trump added that he believes sanctions are at a “fair” level.

Kim said in his speech reported Saturday that the summit earlier this year in Hanoi made him question the strategy he embraced for talks last year with the U.S.

The North Korean leader said the Vietnam summit “aroused a strong question if we were right in taking the steps with strategic decision and bold resolution, and evoked vigilance as to the U.S.’ true willingness to improve its relations with the DPRK,” the initials of North Korea’s official name.

Kim called offers floated by the U.S. “absolutely impractical,” arguing that the administration did “not really ready itself to sit with us face-to-face and settle the problem,” according to Reuters.

“We will wait for a bold decision from the U.S. with patience till the end of this year but I think it will definitely be difficult to get such a good opportunity as the previous summit,” Kim added.

Trump had said Thursday that “a third summit could happen” but that it might also include South Korea’s Moon, as opposed to his first two one-on-one summits with Kim.

Updated: 8:12 a.m.

Tags Donald Trump North Korea

The Hill has removed its comment section, as there are many other forums for readers to participate in the conversation. We invite you to join the discussion on Facebook and Twitter.

Most Popular

Load more


See all Video