by WorldTribune Staff, September 6, 2018
North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un said he maintains faith in U.S. President Donald Trump and pledged to take “more active” measures toward denuclearization if his moves are met with corresponding goodwill measures.
The North Korean leader made the comments during a meeting in Pyongyang on Sept. 5 with a delegation of officials from South Korea.
Trump responded on Sept. 6 by tweeting, “Kim Jong Un of North Korea proclaims ‘unwavering faith in President Trump.’ Thank you to Chairman Kim. We will get it done together!”
South Korean officials said they forwarded a message from Trump to Kim during their meeting and would send a separate message from Kim to Trump. The officials wouldn’t discuss the content of the messages.
Chung Eui-Yong, national security adviser and head of the South Korean delegation to Pyongyang, said Kim told him that he still had faith in Trump despite diplomatic setbacks, The Associated Press reported.
Chung added that Kim had emphasized he has not once talked negatively about Trump to anyone, including his closest advisers.
Kim also told Chung that work to dismantle the only missile engine test site in North Korea “means a complete suspension of future long-range ballistic missile tests.”
Kim also said an end-of-war declaration that Seoul and Pyongyang have been pushing Washington to sign off on wouldn’t weaken the U.S.-South Korean alliance or lead to the withdrawal of the 28,500 U.S. troops stationed in South Korea to prevent North Korean attack, Chung said, according to the AP report.
The South’s delegation announced that they had set up a summit for Sept. 18-20 in Pyongyang between Kim Jong-Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in, which would be their third meeting since April.
The North’s Rodong Sinmun newspaper on Sept. 6 said the Trump administration must discard its “stubborn” stance that Pyongyang must denuclearize first before the United States agrees to a peace treaty. The article said the North has shown “goodwill and generosity” through actions such as returning U.S. war remains and dismantling a nuclear testing ground, but that the U.S. has failed to respond similarly.
Trump called off a planned visit to North Korea by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo last month, citing insufficient progress in denuclearization.
Speaking on Sept. 6 in India, Pompeo said the U.S. will continue to work with North Korea to “deliver for the world” in upholding UN Security Council resolutions against its nuclear and missile programs, and the commitment Kim made at his June summit with Trump on denuclearization. Pompeo declined to talk about what he described as “ongoing negotiations” with the North Koreans.