Trump: I 'probably' have a very good relationship with Kim

U.S. President hints he has a good relationship with North Korean dictator, but won't specify whether he spoke with him.

Elad Benari,

Donald Trump
Donald Trump
Reuters

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Thursday that "I probably have a very good relationship" with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un.

At the same time the president, who made the comments in an interview with The Wall Street Journal, declined to say whether he had actually spoken with Kim.

"I'm not saying I have or haven’t. I just don’t want to comment," said Trump.

His comments echoed remarks Trump made to reporters over the weekend at Camp David, in which the president said that dialogue with Pyongyang was not impossible.

"I always believe in talking," Trump said Saturday, as quoted by Fox News. "Absolutely I would do that, I wouldn't have a problem with that at all."

The president later added that any discussions with North Korea would be accompanied by unspecified conditions, while U.S. Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley stressed North Korea would have to stop conducting nuclear tests before the United States would enter into any talks with it.

Trump’s remarks came after North and South Korea this week held their first talks in two years, and the North agreed to participate in the Winter Olympics in the South next month.

Trump has toned down his rhetoric vis-à-vis North Korea in recent days. Last week, Kim claimed that his country has developed the capability to hit the entire U.S. mainland with its nuclear weapons.

“The entire United States is within range of our nuclear weapons, and a nuclear button is always on my desk. This is reality, not a threat,” Kim said in a televised New Year’s Day speech.

Trump later fired back, writing on Twitter, “North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un just stated that the ‘Nuclear Button is on his desk at all times.’ Will someone from his depleted and food starved regime please inform him that I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!”

Kim’s threats were the latest in an ongoing back-and-forth between he and Trump, who refers to Kim as “little rocket man” and has in the past threatened to "totally destroy" North Korea if it attacks the United States.

In the interview with The Wall Street Journal, Trump framed his past comments as part of a strategy.

"You'll see that a lot with me and then all of the sudden somebody’s my best friend," the president said. "I could give you 20 examples. You could give me 30. I’m a very flexible person."


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