Trump: Summit with Kim may be delayed

U.S. President says Kim Jong Un is "serious" about denuclearization but warns their June 12 summit may be delayed.

Ben Ariel,

Donald Trump
Donald Trump

U.S. President Donald Trump warned on Tuesday that his planned summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un may be delayed, but insisted the North Korean leader is "serious" about denuclearization, AFP reports.

"It may not work out for June 12," Trump said of the planned meeting in Singapore, adding that "if it does not happen, maybe it will happen later."

"There are certain conditions we want to happen. I think we'll get those conditions. And if we don't, we won't have the meeting," said Trump, who spoke at a meeting in the White House with South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

"You never know about deals," Trump continued. "I've made a lot of deals. You never really know."

North Korea last week said that the summit between Trump and Kim is at risk because of joint military exercises between the U.S. and South Korea.

An official in Pyongyang also stated that the summit was in jeopardy because Kim was angered by national security adviser John Bolton's suggestion that the Trump administration could use a “Libya model” with North Korea.

“If the U.S. is trying to drive us into a corner to force our unilateral nuclear abandonment, we will no longer be interested in such dialogue and cannot but reconsider our proceeding to the DPRK-U.S. summit,” North Korean Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye Gwan said.

Pyongyang also canceled at the last minute a high-level meeting with the South in protest over joint military drills between Seoul and Washington.

Despite that, Trump said Tuesday he believes the North Korean leader is willing to give up nukes. "I do think he is serious. I think he is absolutely very serious."

He suggested that Kim's apparent about-face may have been at the behest of Chinese leader Xi Jinping.

"There was a difference when Kim Jong Un left China the second time," Trump said. "There was a different attitude after that meeting and I was a little surprised.

"And I think things changed after that meeting so I can't say that I am happy about it."

Trump also said Kim “will be extremely happy" if the deal works out. "He will be very happy."

Last week, the President said he is “willing to do a lot” to offer Kim “protections” if the North Korean leader agrees to surrender his nuclear weapons.

“He will get protections that are very strong,” Trump said during an Oval Office meeting with NATO’s secretary-general, adding, “The best thing he could do is make a deal.”

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