After months of trading insults and talks of war plans, President Donald Trump has decided to meet with North Korea dictator Kim Jong Un.
Trump would be the first U.S. president to meet with a North Korean leader, and said Thursday that it’s based on the premise that North Korea will cease missile testing before the meeting and is talking about denuclearization.
Kim Jong Un talked about denuclearization with the South Korean Representatives, not just a freeze. Also, no missile testing by North Korea during this period of time. Great progress being made but sanctions will remain until an agreement is reached. Meeting being planned!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 9, 2018
Trump “will accept the invitation at a place and time to be determined,” Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said in a Thursday statement. “We look forward to the denuclearization of North Korea.”
Statement from Sanders on the North Korea announcement: pic.twitter.com/3lcbQYWVyP
— Tarini Parti (@tparti) March 9, 2018
The U.S. had sought a promise from North Korea to refrain from nuclear and missile tests as a condition of meeting, according to The Wall Street Journal.
U.S. and South Korean officials have not said when both countries will carry out the annual Foal Eagle military exercise, which is meant to coincide with the end of North Korea’s winter training cycle when the country’s military is at its highest state of readiness.
This year, Foal Eagle was delayed due to the Olympics in South Korea. A Defense Department spokesman said an announcement on when the military exercise will take place when the Para-Olympics are completed.
As for the course of the potential negotiations between the two governments, Rep. Lindsey Graham offered a word of caution to North Korea: “The worst possible thing you can do is meet with President Trump in person and try to play him.”
My statement on North Korea. pic.twitter.com/tOpa3ewrtl
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) March 9, 2018
This is a developing story and will be updated as we know more.