Vastavam web: U.S. President Donald Trump expressed hope on Friday that “something good” could come from North Korea’s participation in the Winter Olympics in South Korea, even after Pyongyang warned it would not “sit idle” if Washington and Seoul resumed military exercises after the Games.Trump met North Korean defectors at the White House on Friday and said the Olympics could serve as an indicator as to whether the crisis over North Korea’s development of nuclear weapons capable of hitting the United States could be resolved.
“It’s a very tricky situation,” Trump told reporters. “We’re going to find out how it goes. We think the Olympics will go very nicely and after that, who knows.”He said he was not trying to send a message to North Korea by meeting the defectors. “They were here and I said ‘let’s tell your story’.”“We ran out of road,” he said. “We have no road left. So we’ll see what happens, but in the meantime, we’ll get through the Olympics and maybe something good can come out of the Olympics. Who knows?”The North-South talks, the first in two years, came after Washington and Seoul agreed to push back a routine military drill until after the Olympics and Paralympics. The Games begin next week and run until March 18.He said that whenever the drills took place “the peace and security of the Korean peninsula were gravely threatened and the inter-Korean mistrust and confrontation reached the top, thus creating great difficulties and obstacles ahead of hard-won dialogues”.
“We will make every effort to improve inter-Korean relations in future, too, but never sit idle with regard to sinister act of throwing a wet blanket over our efforts,” Ri said.In a commentary on Friday, North Korea’s state media said Washington was attempting to create a “stage of confrontation” at the Olympics by saying the inter-Korean talks and the positive results that had stemmed from them could “disappear” after the Games.
The Pentagon did not respond to a request for comment on the North Korean statement about the drills, but a spokesman for the U.S. State Department, Mike Cavey, said: “The United States and our allies and partners in the region have long conducted routine exercises to maintain readiness. These exercises ensure we are trained for combined joint operations.”While it has repeatedly said it prefers a diplomatic solution, Trump has exchanged threats with Kim and U.S. officials have said the president and his advisers have discussed a preventative “bloody nose” strike on North Korea, alarming experts who warn that this could trigger catastrophic retaliation, especially on South Korea.
U.S. officials have said the debate on military action has lost some momentum as a result of the intra-Korean talks, which Trump has called a “good thing” and credited to his tough stance.The White House said on Friday that Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe spoke by telephone and discussed an expanded missile defence system and other efforts to boost Japan’s defences amid the tensions over North Korea.Trump also spoke to South Korean President Moon Jae-in about human rights in North Korea and trade between the United States and South Korea, the White House said.North Korea criticised Pence’s pending visit to the Olympics and accused Washington of halting improvements in inter-Korean relations.
Last month, a White House official said Pence planned to use his attendance to try to counter Kim Jong Un’s efforts to “hijack” the games with a propaganda campaign.North Korea has also agreed with South Korea to send a 230-strong cheering squad, as well as an orchestra and taekwondo performance team.