Trump willing to walk away from North Korea summit, says Pence

Tuesday, 22 May, 2018

The commemorative piece was minted by the White House Military Office, which typically designs coins for Trump's trips overseas, before an expected summit between the two leaders in Singapore on June 12.

According to that official, the Obama administration had been working on campaigns to confront the four big aggressors in cyberspace - China, Russia, Iran and North Korea - but handed off those plans to the Trump administration.

For now, Trump is dealing prudently with the North.

Asked about the chance of the Trump-Kim summit to be held amid North Korea's recent protest, Chung said, "We see 99.9 percent of chance".

In the view of some analysts, such as Institute for Corean-American Studies Fellow Tara O, Moon appears anxious to persuade Trump to go ahead with the Kim summit and to get the USA president to grant sanctions relief so planned joint South-North projects would be able to proceed.

US President Donald Trump is willing to walk away from an unprecedented summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un scheduled for next month, US Vice President Mike Pence said on Monday (May 21), after North Korea called into question the meeting last week.

It would be the first summit between a sitting United States president and the leader of North Korea, if the meeting happens at all.

China faces a hard balancing act.

He notes that Kim is merely offering a certain degree of restraint, not denuclearization as the USA envisions it.

Ahead of the unprecedented summit, Xi has inserted himself into the discussion.

Trump appeared to downplay the fact the announcement came after Kim had declared his nation's nuclear force as complete, after a slew of weapons tests that included the underground detonation of a purported thermonuclear warhead. South Korea's government expressed regret over the decision, but said it still hopes the North's dismantling of the site proceeds as planned and proves to be a genuine step toward denuclearization.

Earlier this month, with only weeks until the historic summit, North Korea flipped on the US and South Korea, blasting them both with a series of complaints that seemed like a tantrum.

The group that arrived by charter flight from Beijing is made up of media from the U.K., Russia, China and the United States.

North Korea also bashed the Trump administration's comparison of North Korea, a country believed to be in possession of a functional nuclear arsenal, to Libya, a country which forfeited its nuclear program in the early stages of nuclear development. That is typical North Korean brinkmanship.

But already, the path to denuclearizing North Korea is getting gummed up. Though India has been North Korea's second largest trading partner after China, bilateral trade came down to around $130 million in 2016-17 from around $209 million in 2014-15.

"We have seen a repeated pattern of North Korea's tactic of negotiations, which tends to drag the time until the very last minute when they decide what they can accept and do not", Oh says.

But North Korea can be highly unpredictable. So I think, as the President has said, right now it's still on.

"My view is that this is less an issue of [North Korean] disinterest and more an issue of the deals themselves", said Richard Nephew, a senior research scholar at the Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University's School of worldwide and Public Affairs.

There have been efforts for decades to institute an Asia Super Grid that would serve the Korean Peninsula and its neighbors, Japan and China. He said the meetings produced an agreement on increased Chinese purchases of American products and measures to make it easier for USA companies to operate in China.

"In this case, the US and its allies will be free from nuclear attack but North Korea's surrounding countries like China would be affected", Zhang said.