This post had been updated to include additional comments from President Donald Trump.
U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday said North and South Korea have his “blessing” to put an end to the “war” between the two countries.
The two Koreas fell short of signing a peace treaty at the end of the Korean War in 1953, while the U.S. and North Korea signed an Armistice Agreement which only ended the conflict until a peaceful settlement could be reached.
Speaking from his resort in Mar-a-Lago in Florida, Trump welcomed the news that the two countries may announce a formal peace agreement in the near future.
“South Korea is meeting and has plans to meet with North Korea to see if they can end the war and they have my blessing on that,” Trump said.
“They do have my blessing to discuss the end of the war. Subject to a deal, they would certainly have my blessing.”
South Korean news outlet the Munwha Ilbo reported on Tuesday that the two Koreas were working on a peace agreement, citing unnamed government sources.
The U.S. President made the comments during a summit with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, with an upcoming North Korean negotiation between Washington and Pyongyang high on the agenda.
Trump added that the U.S. has had high-level talks with North Korea in advance of the proposed summit scheduled for late May or early June.
“We have had direct talks at very high levels, extremely high levels with North Korea,” the U.S. President said.
But Trump added that the talks are not set in stone, and indicated there is still at least some chance they might not happen.
“It’s possible things won’t go well and we won’t have the meetings and we’ll just continue to go on this very strong path we have taken,” Trump said.
Trump later added that five locations were being considered for the negotiations between him and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, though none were in the United States.
The U.S. President also took credit for the recent thawing in North-South relations, the North’s diplomatic outreach and also the DPRK’s attendance at the South Korea Winter Olympics.
“They’ve been very generous that without us and without me in particular, I guess, they wouldn’t be discussing anything and the Olympics would have been a failure,”
“As you know North Korea participated in the Olympics and it was really quite an Olympics. It was quite a success. That would not have happened.”