President Donald Trump suggested Tuesday that a planned historic meeting with North Korea's Kim Jong Un could be delayed. North Korean officials also lambasted National Security Adviser John Bolton, who had gone on television Sunday to praise the "Libya model" of arms control, under which the late dictator Moammar Qaddafi surrendered his nuclear program in exchange for an easing of economic sanctions.
Since the April 27 inter-Korean summit, however, the North has once again gone on the offensive, threatening to reconsider its summit with the U.S. It has also suspended high-level dialogue with South Korea, originally scheduled for last week.
In a bid to keep plans for the summit on track, Trump on Thursday contradicted Bolton, saying his administration isn't using Libya as a example for North Korea "at all" and that the USA would probably need to provide assurances to the regime to get a grand bargain.
Officials now in senior positions in the Moon administration know the current US National Security Adviser's background all too well.
"It increasingly looks like the Moon administration overstated North Korea's willingness to deal". "That doesn't mean it won't work out over a period of time", he said.
The event was described as a transparent dismantling "ceremony" by North Korean official. North Korea earlier called the June 12 meeting into question when it slammed ongoing military exercises between South Korea and the U.S. as a provocation and an invasion rehearsal.
Mr Trump had repeatedly said the talks were shaping up well, even calling Mr Kim nice for releasing three American hostages held for more than a year.
Trump said "there's a very substantial chance" that the meeting won't take place on June 12.
In 2003, Libya negotiated sanctions relief from the United States in exchange for renouncing its nuclear program and welcoming worldwide inspectors to verify the disarmament.
The North Korean regime, however, remembers what happened afterward: Col Gadhafi was overthrown and brutally killed by his opponents. The national security adviser advocated for verification of North Korea's denuclearization efforts, but he did not seem to imply that the USA would try to remove the North Korean leadership.
"Instead, he is a simple follower of simple thinking, racism and the narrow-minded America First policy", the paper wrote. But the two sides are still miles apart on defining what might be mutually acceptable.More news: How Cheeky Princess Charlotte Steals the Show at Royal Wedding
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He did not detail the conditions he had laid out for Kim but said if they aren't met, "we won't have the meeting".
The South Korean president partly helped make the unprecedented U.S.
South Korean Moon Jae-in is expected to visit the White House on Tuesday. "He will follow President Trump's lead".
"I will guarantee his safety, yes", Trump said, noting that promise was conditioned on an agreement to complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization.
President Moon, who will meet with Trump in Washington on Tuesday, has said he will try to moderate differences between the USA and North Korea over how to achieve denuclearization, while also giving the Kim government the security guarantees and sanctions relief it wants.
Trump apparently sought to offer some reassurances to the North, saying the nuclear deal he had in mind for North Korea was not like any other denuclearization model and that Kim would be "very, very happy" if they reached a deal at their upcoming summit.
US officials say their goal remains clear, using an acronym that has quickly entered the Washington lexicon: CVID, or "complete, verifiable, irreversible denuclearization".
Trump, who has pitched himself as the ultimate negotiator, has focused on ambitious deals as president but has struggled with the fine print.
Trump's definition of a "Libya model" appears to have differed from Bolton's. When asked if his comparison between Libya and North Korea could be perceived as a threat, he responded: "Well, I think it's more of a fact". "That's Trump's negotiation strategy".
The North also threatened to abandon the planned Trump-Kim meeting over USA insistence on rapidly denuclearizing the peninsula, issuing a harshly worded statement that the White House dismissed as a negotiating ploy.