Kim Jong Un Praises Trump, but Omits Denuclearization
- Author: Jon Douglas Jul 13, 2018,
Jul 13, 2018, 1:59
President Donald Trump Thursday released a letter from Kim Jong Un, in which the North Korean leader voices confidence in efforts to end their nuclear standoff, while calling on his United States counterpart to take "practical actions" to build trust.
Trump described the letter as a "very nice note" and said, "Great progress being made!".
While the summit represented a major thaw in relations, US sanctions on North Korea, among the most stringent in the world, will remain in place until the Kim regime implements "final, fully verified denuclearization", US State Secretary Mike Pompeo said last week. "President Trump committed to provide security guarantees to the DPRK, and Chairman Kim Jong Un reaffirmed his firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula".
In his letter, which was written 24 days after the June 12 summit in Singapore, Kim addressed Mr Trump as "Your Excellency Mr President".
Their meeting - the first between a sitting United States president and North Korea, led to claims that the latter would work towards dumping its nuclear weapons.
According to President Trump, returning the remains of US troops was agreed upon during the Singapore summit.
US State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said North Korea has now offered to meet the delegation on Sunday.
Other speculation is that North Korea was discomforted with the way it was portrayed by the USA media _ as trying to make money from the war remains.
In an article published by 38 North, a website devoted to expert analysis of North Korea, Robert Carlin noted that the language in the release suggested some progress has been made during the talks. The agreement reportedly covered the remains of some 200 American soldiers.
The White House had said earlier Pompeo would meet with the leader, but the encounter did not materialise and the top USA diplomat only met with Kim Yong Chol.
But skepticism remains over whether North Korea's findings will satisfy Japan.
"We had anticipated the USA side would come with a constructive idea, thinking we would take something in return", a foreign ministry official said in a statement.
He was referring the summit statement signed by the two leaders - the first-ever U.S.
Trump shared the letters on social media, one written in Korean and the other a translation.
But while improving relations and decreasing hostility has certainly been a benefit of Trump's diplomatic push on North Korea, it's been a means to the end of denuclearization.