U.S. President Donald Trump on Wednesday said there was a “good chance” that a planned summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un would take place in the coming weeks.
Speaking during a joint press conference with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, the U.S. leader said that progress on the proposed negotiations with North Korea was being made.
“I will be meeting with Kim Jong Un in the coming weeks to discuss the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula,” Trump told assembled reporters.
“Hopefully that meeting will be a great success and we are looking forward to it. It would be a tremendous thing for North Korea and a tremendous thing for the world.”
But the U.S. President also took a firm line on the proposed meeting, saying that he would cancel the summit if Washington decides that it won’t be successful.
“If we don’t think it’s going to be successful, we won’t have it … If the meeting when I’m there isn’t fruitful, I will respectfully leave the meeting,” Trump said, adding that the U.S. would continue its maximum pressure campaign if negotiations broke down.
Both leaders also took a strong stance on the upcoming negotiations, reaffirming that the complete and verifiable denuclearization of the Korean peninsula was the end goal.
“There is a bright path available to North Korea when it achieves denuclearization in a complete and verifiable and irreversible way,” Trump said.
Trump did not offer any concrete updates on the proposed summit’s timing or location, only saying that Washington was “working very hard” on the issue.
The U.S. President added he was negotiating on the release of three U.S. citizens currently held in North Korea, though would not clarify if they would constitute sticking point in the discussions.
“The fact is that they do have three prisoners … We have been talking about them. We are negotiating now. We are doing our very best. As you know, they’ve been there a very long time and it’s harsh treatment.”
During the summit with Abe, the two leaders also discussed North Korea’s abduction of Japanese citizens and Trump implied their retrieval could also be on the agenda when he meets his North Korean counterpart.
The conference followed reports on Tuesday that CIA director Mike Pompeo recently returned from North Korea where he met with Kim, though no further details on the meeting were released.
Featured image: White House
Join the influential community of members who rely on NK News original news and in-depth reporting.
Subscribe to read the remaining 419 words of this article.
Featured Image: Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore on 2017-02-24 08:38:48