Donald Trump still does not rule out the possibility of meeting North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore on June 12, despite the fact that he canceled the long-awaited summit on Thursday .
“We will see what will happen. We are talking to them now [to the North Koreans], “he told reporters on Friday morning in front of the White House. “It could even be the 12th … We would like to do it,” he added.
When a journalist asked him if he thought Kim Jong-un was “playing a game” on this issue, the president replied, smirking, “Everyone plays games.”
US Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis has also hinted cryptically that the summit could move forward.
“We have possibly received good news on the summit. If diplomats can do it, it could be reprogrammed, “he told reporters at the Pentagon.
Pyongyang still wants the summit
Earlier Friday, North Korea’s First Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye-gwan responded to the cancellation of the summit by saying that Pyongyang was always ready to hold these talks.
“We reiterate in the United States our determination to sit down face to face, at any time and in any way, to solve the problem,” he said in a statement issued by the official KCNA news agency.
“The abrupt announcement of the cancellation of the meeting is unexpected for us and we can only describe it as extremely regrettable,” he added.
Before speaking to reporters, Trump praised North Korea’s “warm and productive” statement and expressed hope for “long and lasting prosperity and peace”.
The US president canceled his summit with Kim Jong-on Thursday deploring “a huge anger and open hostility” from Pyongyang, but without closing the door on a future meeting.
“I believe that a wonderful dialogue was being built between you and me, and ultimately it is only this dialogue that matters. One day, I hope to meet you, “he wrote to him.
A historic chance, recalls Beijing
President Trump’s decision continued to provoke reactions on Friday, including Japan and China.
“It’s a shame,” said Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum. “In the future, it is necessary to realize such a meeting, it is essential to solve the problems that have accumulated,” he added, according to the Russian translation of his remarks.
“The recent relaxation on the Korean peninsula has been hard-fought and the political settlement process is still facing a rare historic chance,” commented Lu Kang, a spokesman for Chinese diplomacy.
“In the present circumstances, we hope that both North Korea and the United States will preserve the recent progress achieved, that they will show patience, good will, move in the same direction and remain committed to the denuclearization of the peninsula, “he added.
Mr. Lu also rejected President Trump’s insinuations earlier this week that North Korea has changed its tone towards the United States after Kim Jong-un met with Chinese President Xi Jinping on July 7. May, in Dalian.
“We have no ulterior motives,” said Lu Kang
Beth Letang is a reporter for Cleveland Post Gazette. After graduating from college, Beth got an internship at NPR and worked as a reporter and producer. Beth has also worked as a reporter for ESPN. Beth covers entertainment and community events for Cleveland Post Gazette.