Donald Trump: Kim Jong Un will respect "our handshake"
US President Donald Trump today expressed confidence in the ongoing talks with North Korea, despite tensions between Washington and Pyongyang over the weekend during Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's visit. Trump even said that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un would respect "our handshake".
The historic summit of the two leaders on June 12 in Singapore resulted in a general announcement, without any timetable or specific commitments from North Korea for a possible denuclearization.
"I am confident that Kim Jong Un will honor the agreement we signed and, most importantly, our handshake," the Republican president tweeted.
It was Trump's first reaction since Pompeo's two-day visit to North Korea, where he held talks with US officials that led to Pyongyang's fire on US "gangster demands" over its nuclear program.
"We agreed on the denuclearization of North Korea," the White House spokesman added.
However, the joint text signed by the two sides simply mentions the denuclearization of the "Korean Peninsula", a vague formula that leaves room for multiple interpretations.
Trump also expressed doubts about Beijing's stance in the ongoing negotiations, arguing that China may play a counterproductive role because of what it says are trade tensions with Washington.
"China, on the other hand, can put negative pressure on a deal because of our stance on Chinese trade, I hope not!" He said in another post.
Pompeo's two-day visit to the isolated state cooled relations between the two sides, with Pyongyang deconstructing the "extremely unfortunate" US behavior during the talks.
Under the regime, the US side violated the spirit of the June 12 agreement in Singapore, with the North Korean Foreign Ministry specifically condemning the "unilateral and greedy demands" of the Americans for denuclearization.
"The United States is making a fatal mistake if it believes that the Democratic People's Republic of Korea should accept (…) demands that reflect its gangster spirit," Pyongyang warned.
In private talks, US diplomats say North Korea's response is a negotiating tactic.
Nevertheless, this reaction seems to signal a return to the traditional position of North Korea, while Trump for several months has expressed optimism for a profound change in the regime.
Following his departure from North Korea, Pompeo on Sunday assured Tokyo that sanctions against Pyongyang would be maintained until its denuclearization was completed.