Trump's Defense of Kim in US Student's Death Riles Some Lawmakers
- Author: Leroy Wright Mar 01, 2019,
Mar 01, 2019, 11:44
Kim, meanwhile, has said he will stay on until Saturday, and then return to Pyongyang on his armored train. They also predicted that Trump would announce the lifting of the severe United Nations economic sanctions in exchange for Kim's readiness to abolish his nuclear ambitions.
"They were willing to denuclearise a large portion of the areas that we wanted but we couldn't give up all of the sanctions for that". "We had to walk away from that".
The allies have been holding smaller training exercises, but experts say a prolonged halt in comprehensive exercises would eventually weaken their military readiness, especially since many USA troops rotate out of South Korea after less than a year of service. Smiling widely, Trump reportedly hailed the autocrat as a "great leader", and in return, Kim called him "courageous".
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters, "It's good that the president did not give him anything for the little he was proposing".
There is also a facility to produce highly enriched uranium (HEU) used to make atomic bombs, experts say, and an experimental light water reactor has been under construction.
Earlier, both Trump and Kim had expressed hope for progress on improving relations and on the key issue of denuclearization, in their talks in the Vietnamese capital, Hanoi, their second summit in eight months. Whatever the reason he and Kim couldn't reach a deal, Trump remains hopeful, but admitted that may not happen.
Hours later, two senior members of the North's delegation told reporters that was not what Kim had demanded.
The Trump administration has never shown much interest in human rights.
The president's closing news conference was hurriedly moved up, and he departed for Washington more than two hours ahead of schedule. "But I am sure all of them will be watching [us] sitting together side-by-side as if they are watching a fantasy movie", he said through an interpreter. Though both he and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said significant progress had been made in Hanoi, the two sides appeared to be galaxies apart on an agreement that would live up to US stated goals. While Trump said the meeting ended amicably with a handshake, he hasn't committed to another summit with Ms Kim.
Democratic Senator Chris Murphy of CT said on Twitter that talking is never a bad idea and "If outcome is that both missile test moratorium and our sanctions continue, and we keep dialogue going, that's not a bad outcome".
You might think answering questions from an global journalist is hardly noteworthy, but with North Korea things are always different.
Trump said they got a better understanding of what Kim thinks of when he says denuclearization.
Anyone with at least a passing knowledge of USA relations with North Korea knew better than to expect anything other than some piecemeal concessions and another vague agreement heavy on pomp and light on details.
That offer was ultimately deemed unacceptable, Trump said, because North Korea has other missile facilities elsewhere in the country.
Trump even called into question the CIA's determination that MBS ordered the journalist's killing.
"President Moon will keep trying to mediate between the USA and North Korea, but I think what will happen depends on how much concession on the denuclearisation front Kim will make".
South Korea's President Moon Jae-in has been an active supporter of efforts to end confrontation on the Korean peninsula, meeting Kim three times previous year and trying to facilitate his nuclear negotiations with the United States.
There has been no comment from Warmbier's parents, who were Trump's guests at the 2018 State of the Union address, when he condemned the "depraved character" of the North Korean state and blamed its "dictatorship" for Warmbier's injuries and death.
Trump took credit for the release of Warmbier and other United States hostages in 2017, saying at the time that "Otto was tortured beyond belief by North Korea".
On Thursday, despite the collapse of denuclearisation talks in Hanoi, Vietnam, Mr Trump absolved Mr Kim of responsibility for Otto's death.
Trump also has a history of cutting short foreign trips and walking out of meetings when he feels no progress is being made.