Donald Trump on Monday tweeted a suggestion that his planned meeting with Kim Jong-un could take place at the Peace House on the border between North and South Korea, the same site as Kim’s historic meeting last week with South Korean president Moon Jae-in.
“Numerous countries are being considered for the MEETING, but would Peace House/Freedom House, on the Border of North & South Korea, be a more Representative, Important and Lasting site than a third party country?” Trump wrote on Twitter.
The president’s breezy message followed on the heels of a tweet in which he complained about a comedian’s routine at the White House correspondents’ dinner in Washington on Saturday. The dinner was “a total disaster and an embarrassment” he wrote, adding: “FAKE NEWS is alive and well and beautifully represented.”
On Sunday, some of Trump’s key advisers counselled contrasting caution on North Korea, despite the historic events of last week and conciliatory messages coming out of Pyongyang about possible denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula, the Trump administration’s expressed aim.
New national security adviser John Bolton, a noted hawk, told CBS: “What we want to see from them is evidence that it’s real and not just rhetoric.”
New secretary of state Mike Pompeo, who as CIA director met Kim in North Korea at Easter, told ABC the administration would not be fooled.
“We know the history, we know the risks,” he said. “We’re going to negotiate in a different way than before, we’re going to require steps that demonstrate denuclearization is going to be achieved. We’re not going to take promises or words, we are going to look for actions and deeds.”
At a rally in Michigan on Saturday night, Trump gave a hint about the timing of his possible meeting with Kim.
“I think we will have a meeting over the next three or four weeks,” he said. “It’s going be a very important meeting, the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula. But we’ll see how it goes. I may go in, it may not work out, I leave.”
Trump’s words were greeted with chants of “Nobel! Nobel!”
South Korea’s president agrees. Moon told a cabinet meeting the American president should win a Nobel peace prize for his efforts to end the standoff with North Korea, a South Korean official said on Monday.
“President Trump should win the Nobel Peace Prize. What we need is only peace,” Moon said, according to a presidential Blue House official who briefed media.
Moon and Kim on Friday pledged to end hostilities between the two countries and work towards the “complete denuclearisation” of the Korean peninsula in the first inter-Korean summit in more than a decade.
Trump’s meeting with Kim was the main subject of a private walk and chat that Kim and Moon had during their meeting at the border, the South Korean official said.
In January, Moon said Trump “deserves big credit for bringing about the inter-Korean talks. It could be a resulting work of the US-led sanctions and pressure”.