After ‘beautiful letter’and more N.K. launches, Trump says he’ll meet with Kim again
President Donald Trump on Friday praised a “beautiful letter” from North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
Hours later, the regime launched further projectiles as a warning against joint military exercises between the United States and South Korea.
On Saturday, Trump slammed the “ridiculous and expensive” joint exercises in a tweet, indicating he’ll meet with Kim “in the not too distant future.”
Trump wrote Saturday: “In a letter to me sent by Kim Jong Un, he stated, very nicely, that he would like to meet and start negotiations as soon as the joint U.S./South Korea joint exercise are over. It was a long letter, much of it complaining about the ridiculous and expensive exercises. It was….. …also a small apology for testing the short range missiles, and that this testing would stop when the exercises end. I look forward to seeing Kim Jong Un in the not too distant future! A nuclear free North Korea will lead to one of the most successful countries in the world!”
“I think we’ll have another meeting,” Trump told reporters outside the White House on Friday. “He really wrote a beautiful three-page — I mean right from top to bottom — a really beautiful letter. And maybe I’ll release the results of the letter, but it was very positive.”
North Korea had five rounds of weapons demonstrations in the past two weeks — including another launch of two projectiles Saturday local time, according to South Korea.
Trump had dismissed the previous tests, saying they were just for short-range missiles. He added that Kim wrote in the “very personal letter” that he is not happy with the U.S.-South Korea joint exercises.
“He wasn’t happy with the tests, the war games. The war games on the other side with the United States. And as you know, I’ve never liked it either,” Trump said. “I don’t like paying for it. We should be reimbursed for it, and I’ve told that to South Korea.”
The missiles North Korea previously tested are able to strike U.S. allies South Korea and Japan as well as U.S. military bases there. But the president said on Friday that Kim sees a “great future” for North Korea, “so we’ll see how it all works out.”
He pivoted to say the U.S. has routinely been taken advantage of by foreign countries, including its allies “in many cases more than anybody else.” Earlier, he told reporters he hopes South Korea and Japan — which have been locked in an economic feud even during North Korea’s weapons demonstrations — would “start getting along.”
“You know, they are supposed to be allies. And it puts us in a very difficult position. South Korea and Japan are fighting all the time,” Trump said.