"They very much want to do it, we'd like to do it".
Yesterday, in a letter to Kim, Trump announced that he was cancelling their June 12 summit meeting in Singapore. "We are talking to them now", he told reporters in Washington earlier Friday, saying the summit might proceed and "it could even be the 12th".
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and French President Emmanuel Macron agreed Friday to work together to keep "maximum pressure" on North Korea to abandon its nuclear and missile weapons in a "complete, verifiable and irreversible" manner. He said: "They very much want to do it, we'd like to do it". "We'd like to do it".
Mr Trump, in his letter to Kim on Thursday, objected specifically to a statement from a top North Korean Foreign Ministry official.
In a letter to Kim, Trump blamed Pyongyang for his decision to call off the summit, and warned North Korea against committing any "foolish or reckless acts" while also highlighting America's "massive and powerful" nuclear capabilities. He added that his country's "objective and resolve to do our best for the sake of peace and stability of the Korean Peninsula and all humankind remain unchanged". Mattis said the recent back-and-forth between Trump and North Korea was a part of the "usual give and take" that goes into putting a large summit together.
Joel Wit, founder of the respected 38 North website that monitors North Korea, said Kim's hand has been strengthened regardless of whether the summit goes ahead because recent weeks have seen him forge connections with Chinese President Xi Jinping, as well as with Russian Federation and South Korea.
Bolton's espousal of the Libya-style model of denuclearization had angered the North Koreans, who have long claimed that the decision by the country's leader, Moammar Gadhafi, to relinquish its fledgling nuclear program led to his downfall and death.
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North Korea issued a statement Friday saying it is still "willing to give the U.S. time and opportunities" to reconsider talks "at any time, at any format".
The implication was clear: North Korea will not come to the table to discuss a one-sided denuclearisation process where it disarms itself at the behest of the United States in exchange for sanctions relief and other economic favours.
Asked earlier whether the North Koreans were playing games, the US President acknowledged they were - and suggested he was too, CNN reported.
Pictures from the summit show Mr Moon and Mr Kim shaking hands as well as embracing, and reveal that Mr Kim brought along his sister, Kim Yo Jung.
But with the summit in doubt, Wit said, North Korea is moving to Plan B, which is to ensure the goodwill it established with South Korea, China and Russian Federation in recent months is not squandered.
US regional allies Japan and South Korea, as well as North Korea's main ally, China, urged the two countries to salvage the summit on Friday.
Trump canceled the planned talks with Kim on Thursday, blaming recent threatening statements by Pyongyang to pull out of the summit over what it saw as confrontational remarks by USA officials. And it's between North Korea and the US right now.
North Korea's Kim Jong-un and South Korean Moon Jae-in met in April in what was only the third meeting between the leaders of the two states.