US President Donald Trump asks for a chat: Not just anyone, not somewhere: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un should come to the border of the two Koreas for a handshake and a short hello.
US President Donald Trump has invited North Korea’s ruler Kim Jong Un to a spontaneous meeting on the Inner Korean border for Sunday. He will leave the G20 Summit in Osaka with South Korea’s President Moon Jae-In for Seoul, Trump wrote on Twitter on Saturday. “While I am here, if Chairman Kim of North Korea sees this, I would meet him at the border / demilitarized zone, just to shake his hand and say hello (?)!” Trump wrote.
There had previously been speculation about a possible meeting of the two politicians who had met twice in Singapore and Hanoi at summit meetings. However, both the White House and Trump himself had initially denied planning for a meeting at the border.
“I just put out a feeler,” Trump said shortly after his tweet. He did not even know if Kim was currently in North Korea at all. “When he’s there, we’ll see each other for two minutes,” Trump said. “That’s all we can do.” The US president again defended his “good relationship” with the ruler of North Korea, who is accused of brutality against his people. “It’s a good thing to get along.” It would certainly have gone to war if he had not taken the initiative as President of the United States and started talks, Trump said.
North Korea has called the invitation interesting. Pyongyang sees this as a “very interesting offer, but we have received no official proposal,” said North Korea Vice-Minister Choe Son Hui, according to the South Korean news agency Yonhap cited on Saturday by state media of the neighboring country.
After the summit between Kim and Trump in Singapore in 2018, which had sent hopeful signals, and the then failed second summit in Hanoi, a meeting on the border would be the third meeting of the two politicians. The talks about the nuclear disarmament of North Korea, which had been roughly agreed in Singapore, had stalled to Hanoi.
Trump expressed his admiration for the border facilities on the Inner Korean border on Saturday. “When we talk about a wall, when we talk about a border, that’s called a border,” Trump said, looking at the 248-kilometer demarcation line between the two Korean states, which is extremely secure with barbed wire and technical surveillance equipment. “Nobody goes beyond that limit, that’s called a real limit.” Trump apparently referred to the numerous border crossings on the US southern border with Mexico, which he would like to secure by a wall.
Trump will leave Osaka for Seoul on Saturday (local time). Shortly after arrival, a working lunch with South Korean President Moon Jae-In is on the program. On Sunday morning (local time) he will then break into the demilitarized zone (DMZ). Trump spoke of a short visit of two minutes. That it actually comes to a meeting with Kim, was initially not officially confirmed.