Donald Trump plans to hold a second meeting with North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un in Vietnam on February 27-28, the US president announced during his State of the Union address, claiming full credit for avoiding a devastating war.
“My relationship with Kim Jong-un is a good one…. Our hostages have come home. Nuclear testing has stopped. And there has not been a missile launch in more than 15 months,” Trump stated in his speech, claiming full credit for the progress of the peace process on the Korean peninsula.
If I had not been elected the president of the United States, we would right now, in my opinion, be in a major war with North Korea
Trump and Kim held a historic meeting in Singapore last June, at which North Korea agreed to dismantle its nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of sanctions that have crippled its economy. Despite the breakthrough, the process has somewhat stalled since, after Washington refused to lift any restrictions before Pyongyang fulfils its part of the deal.
In the meantime, the North stayed true to its pledge and hasn’t tested a missile since 2017. Pyongyang also dismantled one of its test sites and made a significant effort to improve its relations with South Korea, despite the continued presence of 30,000 US troops there.
Ahead of the much-anticipated US-North Korean rendezvous, Kim traveled to China to discuss denuclearization of the Peninsula with President Xi Jinping. Following the meeting, Beijing expressed hope that Pyongyang and Washington can meet each other “halfway” to reach an agreement that will bring a long-lasting peace and stability to the region.
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