President Donald Trump tweeted Monday that he’s confident Kim Jong Un will honor their “contract” and handshake in Singapore to denuclearize, even as he suggested that China may be responsible for North Korea showing new hesitance to move forward on the goal.
The president appeared to be referring to the joint statement he signed with the North Korean leader in his reference to a “contract.” In that joint statement, North Korea committed “to work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.”
The president’s optimistic tweet comes after North Korea issued a pessimistic statement over the weekend following Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s third visit to Pyongyang – and his first since the president’s summit with Kim Jong Un last month.
In a statement, North Korea called the outcome of the two days of talks “extremely worrisome” and accused the United States of “gangster-like” behavior in its demands regarding denuclearization.
Pompeo departed North Korea with a far more positive assessment, declaring that progress was made on the central issues of discussion, and downplayed North Korea’s “gangster” accusation, responding by saying that “if those requests were gangster-like, the world is a gangster.”
Pompeo has characterized the broader North Korean reaction to this weekend’s talks as “mixed,” telling reporters Monday that more positive statements out of Pyongyang have not received the same coverage that the negative statement has.
“I saw some of the statements that came out, they were mixed, you haven’t reported on that, the mixed statements, but maybe you will now. The statements that were put out, Chairman Kim’s statement following our discussions, continued to express his desire to complete the denuclearization to which he is so committed,” Pompeo said.
The statement from North Korea’s Foreign Ministry also said Kim Jong Un still holds “feelings of trust” towards President Trump and have said that Kim sent a handwritten letter to Pompeo laying out his position.
“We still have a long ways to go, but the commitment that the North Koreans made, that frankly Chairman Kim personally made to President Trump remains, has been reinforced,” Pompeo said.