DONALD TRUMP AND KIM JONG UN MET IN HANOI WEDNEZDAY
Donald Trump arrived in Vietnam on Tuesday night for a second meeting with Kim Jong-un, supposed to give substance to the largely symbolic declaration on the “denuclearization of the Korean peninsula” from their previous summit.
The capital of Vietnam welcomes this Wednesday and Thursday the new appointment between the North Korean leader and the US President, whose exact location and conduct have been carefully kept secret.
The presidential plane Air Force One landed in the evening of Tuesday at Noi Bai International Airport after a trip of more than 20 hours. A few hours earlier, wearing his traditional Mao-style suit, Kim Jong-un had descended, after a 4000-kilometer railway odyssey, from his famous olive-green armored train in Dong Dang Station, a Vietnamese border town. ordinary quiet where schoolboys waving flags were waiting for him.
Before his arrival, Donald Trump was optimistic, ensuring on Twitter wait impatiently “a very productive summit”. Very few details filtered on the meeting. The two leaders are due to have dinner together on Wednesday with some of their advisors before meeting on Thursday for a tête-à-tête, the White House said.
In June, in Singapore, Kim Jong-un pledged to “work towards the complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula”. But since then, the lack of concrete progress has made many observers skeptical. Stephen Biegun, the US envoy for the North, recently acknowledged that Pyongyang and Washington had “not agreed on the meaning” of denuclearization.
The United States has repeatedly demanded that Pyongyang completely and “verifiably and irreversibly” gets rid of its nuclear arsenal – which has earned it an impressive string of UN sanctions over the years. North Korea denounces what it sees as US threats, namely the military presence in South Korea and in the region in general.
Donald Trump repeats that he is in no hurry to convince the North to give up its nuclear arsenal, as long as it abstains, as it has done for more than a year, from launching missiles and nuclear tests.
“I do not want to rush anyone,” he said before he left Washington, seeming to temper in advance the hopes raised by the Vietnamese summit.
For months, the American president has been handling carrots and sticks on this issue, mirroring the economic potential of North Korea while refusing the easing of sanctions. “With a complete denuclearization, North Korea will quickly become an economic power, otherwise we will stay at the same point!”, He tweeted. “President Kim will make a wise decision!” For its part, Pyongyang insists it has already made gestures, with the freezing of military trials and by blowing up access to its nuclear test site.
At the end of this meeting, Washington could promise security guarantees in the form of an official declaration on the end of the Korean War (1950-53) that ended with an armistice or open a liaison office. .