US President Donald Trump said Saturday that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un wants to resume denuclearization talks after US-South Korean war games end.
Trump tweeted that in a letter to him, Kim apologized for a recent spate of missile tests, the latest of which came at daybreak Saturday Korean time, and said they were to protest these joint military drills.
Trump said he looks “forward to seeing Kim Jong Un in the not too distant future!”
“In a letter to me sent by Kim Jong Un, he stated, very nicely, that he would like to meet and start negotiations as soon as the joint U.S./South Korea joint exercise are over,” Trump wrote.
The exercises began Monday and are due to last another week. North Korea has said the recent short-range missile tests are designed to protest the war games.
On Saturday, Trump again seemed to side with Kim by criticizing the exercises, which are a cornerstone of US-South Korean military cooperation.
“It was a long letter, much of it complaining about the ridiculous and expensive exercises. It was also a small apology for testing the short range missiles, and that this testing would stop when the exercises end,” Trump said.
Trump has appeared determined to secure a denuclearization agreement with North Korea ahead of next year’s US presidential elections, despite faltering talks since he first met Kim in a historic ice-breaking summit in Singapore in June 2018.
– ‘A very beautiful letter’ –