Pyongyang rejected Trump's claims that crippling sanctions forced the regime to the negotiating table and said the USA should not "deliberately provoke" them by deploying strategic assets in South Korea and bringing up human rights issues, KCNA, the North's official news agency said Sunday, Reuters reported. The U.S. leader attempted to visit the Demilitarized Zone by helicopter last November during his visit to the South, but the trip was halted by poor visibility.
Kim reportedly wanted to meet in Pyongyang, but was later persuaded to travel to Mongolia, a country which has diplomatic ties with both the U.S. and North Korea and is accessible by rail so Kim can travel there in his bulletproof train. South Korea's Yonhap news agency reported the military assets include eight U.S. F-22 stealth fighter jets recently sent to participate in the annual joint South Korea-U.S. air training.
North Korea said Sunday the US was misleading public opinion and provoking the regime by seeing Kim's willingness to denuclearize as a sign of "weakness" resulting from sanctions and pressure on the regime. It is also believed to have built an arsenal of 20 to 60 nuclear warheads over the years. With the United States and South Korea taking more proactive stances on North Korea and the presidents of the two countries - Trump and Moon Jae-in, respectively, getting pats on their backs and calls for them deserving the Nobel Peace Prize also emerging, it becomes necessary for China to ensure that the U.S. and its ally do not run away with the credit for peace in North Korea.
The North's leader Kim Jong-un, in his turn, during the inter-Korean summit expressed his willingness also to hold talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
Other less dramatic but notable signs of rapprochement have emerged nearly daily, including North Korea moving its clocks forward by 30 minutes early Saturday to match time with the South.
There has been much speculation over the location of historic summit. In addition, officials from the two countries have held already held talks several times there and Singapore has a history of hosting summits for leaders of other countries.
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North Korea has also described movement of USA military assets in to the region as "a risky attempt to ruin the hard earned atmosphere of dialogue and bring the situation back to square one". "It's all agreed to", the president told mediapersons at the White House on Friday.
He added: "Stayed tuned".
"This third summit between the two leaders affirms the enduring strength of the United States-Republic of Korea alliance and the deep friendship between our two countries", the White House said in a statement. "I had one of the fake news groups this morning, they were saying, 'What do you think President Trump had to do with it?' I'll tell you what, like how about everything". Mr. Trump hinted the release of Kim Dong Chul, Kim Hak Song and Tony Kim was in the offing.
"President Trump should win the Nobel Peace Prize".
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, at his swearing-in ceremony last week, said the USA will not repeat the mistakes of past administrations when it comes to limiting the nuclear programs of rogue nations.
North and South Korea are technically still at war because their 1950-53 conflict ended in a truce, not a peace treaty.