In a statement to reporters on Friday, President Donald Trump said that his cancelled summit with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un could still take place.
What is the president saying?
“We'll see what happens,” Trump said. “We're talking to them now, it was a very nice statement they put out. We'll see what happens.”
After a question from a reporter, Trump repeated that the meeting could still take place, perhaps even on the same day as the canceled summit:
“We'll see what happens. It could even be the 12th. We're talking to them now. They very much want to do it, we'd like to do it. We're going to see what happens.”
NEW: Pres. Trump says "we're talking" to North Korea now; "it was a very nice statement they put out; we'll see what happens."
— ABC News (@ABC) May 25, 2018
What did North Korea say?
The North Korean statement that Trump referred to stated:
We have inwardly highly appreciated President Trump for having made the bold decision, which any other U.S. presidents dared not, and made efforts for such a crucial event as the summit. His sudden and unilateral announcement to cancel the summit is something unexpected to us and we can not but feel great regret for it.
On Thursday, Trump announced that his planned summit with Kim in Singapore on June 12 had been cancelled due to a “recent statement” made by North Korea.
In a letter addressed to “His Excellency Kim Jong Un” released by the White House, Trump said, in part:
Sadly, based on the tremendous anger and open hostility displayed in your most recent statement, I feel it is inappropriate, at this time, to have this long-planned meeting. Therefore, please let this letter serve to represent that the Singapore summit, for the good of both parties, but to the detriment of the world will not take place.
Although it was not entirely clear exactly what statement Trump was referring to, the cancellation came just a day after North Korea’s vice minister of foreign affairs mocked Vice President Mike Pence as a “political dummy.” CNN cited sources that claimed Trump was furious about this comment, and wanted to respond.
The vice minister also suggested on Wednesday that North Korea could “make the U.S. taste an appalling tragedy it has neither experienced nor even imagined.”