Trump said at the press conference, "I could have 100 percent signed something today. We actually had papers ready to be signed, but it was not appropriate."
By Rahma Ouled Cherif
Rabat – US President Donald Trump and North Korea Supreme Leader Kim Jong-Un ended a two-day summit at the Metropole Hotel in downtown Hanoi abruptly. This second summit between the two leaders was organized to reach an agreement between North Korea and US, through discussing the closure of nuclear production facilities and annulment of sanctions.
After Trump and Kim’s brief one-on-one meeting during the first day of the summit, Trump expressed his high hopes: “I feel like the first time was great success, I think this one will be equal or greater than the first.”
The first summit was held in June 2018 in Singapore, when the two leaders signed an agreement to work towards the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.
On Thursday, Kim answered a reporter’s question for the first time ever and reciprocated similar hopes. Asked whether he was “ready to denuclearize,” Kim stated, “If I’m not willing to do that I [wouldn’t] be here right now.”
Despite this, the day of negotiations ended in roughly 30 minutes, and Trump returned to his hotel for a press conference two hours earlier than originally planned.
The negotiations came to halt after both parties failed to forge a mutual agreement.
During the press conference, Trump said “It was about the sanctions…. Basically, they wanted the sanctions lifted in their entirety and we couldn’t do that.” He asserted that Kim was offering to close the Yongbyon nuclear processing facility, along with additional nuclear production facilities.
North Korea’s foreign minister, Ri Yong-ho, disputed the claim, stating, “We proposed to remove five sanctions from 11 U.N. sanctions resolutions, specifically ones that impede livelihood of our people.”
The United Nations has authorized nearly a dozen international sanctions on North Korea since 2006.
These sanctions restrict North Korea from accessing any equipment that could be used for the development of its nuclear programs as well as limiting the importation of resources, including seafood.
Trump stated that, “I could have 100 percent signed something today. We actually had papers ready to be signed, but it was not appropriate.”
Mike Pompeo, US secretary of state, explained that Kim was “unprepared” to agree to US demands, but that negotiating teams would resolve their differences in the “days and weeks ahead.”