Kim Jong Un: North Korea open to further talks with Donald Trump

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Kim Jong Un: North Korea open to further talks with Donald Trump

US president Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un have held two summits.


North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service/AP)
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service/AP)

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said he is open to a third summit with US president Donald Trump.

But Mr Kim set a deadline of the end of 2019 for Washington to offer mutually acceptable terms for an agreement to salvage the high-stakes nuclear diplomacy, the country’s state-run media said Saturday.

He made the comments during a speech on Friday at a session of the North Korea’s parliament, which made a slew of personnel changes that bolstered his diplomatic lineup amid stalemated negotiations with the United States.

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People watch a TV screen showing an image of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (Ahn Young-Joon/AP)

His speech came hours after Mr Trump and visiting South Korean president Moon Jae-in met in Washington and agreed on the importance of nuclear talks with North Korea.

“We of course place importance on resolving problems through dialogue and negotiations. But US-style dialogue of unilaterally pushing its demands doesn’t fit us, and we have no interest in it,” Mr Kim said during the speech.

According to the Korean Central News Agency, he blamed the collapse of his summit with Mr Trump in February on what he described as unilateral demands by the United States, which he said raised questions over whether Washington has genuine willingness to improve relations.

We will wait with patience until the end of the year for the United States to come up with a courageous decision

But he said his personal relationship with the American president remains good and that they could exchange letters at “any time”.

Mr Kim repeated earlier claims that North Korea’s crippled economy would persevere through heavy international sanctions imposed over its nuclear weapons program and that he wouldn’t “obsess over summitry with the United States out of thirst for sanctions relief”.

The United States has said the summit in Vietnam broke down because of the North’s excessive demands for sanctions relief in return for limited disarmament measures.

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A man reads a newspaper showing photos of the US, South Korean and North Korean leaders (Ahn Young-Joon/AP)

In their first summit last June in Singapore, Mr Trump and Mr Kim issued a vague statement calling for a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula without describing when and how it would occur.

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Mr Kim said the United States has been refusing to withdraw what the North perceives as “hostile policies” while sticking to “mistaken judgment that we would succumb to maximum pressure”.

He said the North would not compromise on the “fundamental interests of our country and people, even by a speck,” and blamed the United States for arriving in Hanoi with “completely unrealisable plans.”

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US president Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un met in Hanoi (Evan Vucci/AP)

“If the United States approaches us with the right manner and offers to hold a third North Korea-US leaders’ summit on the condition of finding solutions we could mutually accept, then we do have a willingness to give it one more try,” he added.

“We will wait with patience until the end of the year for the United States to come up with a courageous decision. But it will clearly be difficult for a good opportunity like last time to come up.”

When asked about Mr Kim’s comments, South Korea’s presidential office said Seoul is committed toward keeping the atmosphere of dialogue alive and helping negotiations between Washington and Pyongyang resume at an early date.

Press Association

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