‘Trump played political gamesmanship at US-North Korea summit
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‘Trump played political gamesmanship at US-North Korea summit

“There are several theories about why the second summit failed and I think further details will be coming out in the coming days,” said James Jatras, a specialist in international relations. Trump and Kim first met in Singapore last June and agreed to establish new relations and peace in exchange for a North Korean pledge to work toward complete denuclearization. There might be “an element of gamesmanship for domestic political consumption by Trump,” Jatras said. The last minute intervention by US National Security Adviser John Bolton to try to add to the demands of North Korea also contributed to the lack of an agreement, Jatras added. The US and North Korea offered contradictory accounts Thursday of why the second Trump-Kim summit broke down, though both pointed to harmful US sanctions as a stumbling block in the nuclear negotiation. Trump, who returned to the White House Thursday night, said before leaving Hanoi that the talks collapsed because North Korea’s leader insisted that all sanctions Washington has imposed on Pyongyang be lifted without any firm commitment to eliminate its nuclear arsenal. Trump told reporters at the press conference that he “had to walk away” from the negotiations because Kim insisted on the removal of all sanctions as a prerequisite to denuclearization. But North Korea offered a starkly different breakdown of the summit, insisting it had asked only for partial sanctions relief in exchange for shutting down its main nuclear complex. North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho told reporters in a separate presser that Pyongyang never asked for the removal of all sanctions. The demise of the talks came after Trump and Kim had appeared ready to move forward in normalizing relations between their still technically warring nations. Washington has demanded North Korea’s complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization before sanctions can be lifted, a position Pyongyang has denounced as “gangster like.”

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