Trump again touts N. Korea’s economic potential

August 26, 2019

U.S. President Donald Trump again touted North Korea’s “tremendous” economic potential on Monday, indicating his commitment to continuing denuclearization talks with the regime.

At a press conference in Biarritz, France, Trump said he and his wife, Melania, have gotten to know North Korean leader Kim Jong-un “extremely well.”

“I think North Korea has tremendous economic potential. I think Kim Jong-un sees that,” he said in the joint presser with French President Emmanuel Macron at the conclusion of a Group of Seven summit.

Trump appeared to be alluding to the sanctions relief and other economic concessions Washington would offer if Pyongyang agreed to dismantle its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

He especially noted North Korea’s geographical location between China, Russia and South Korea, saying that barring flying the only way to reach the South is through the North.

Talks between Washington and Pyongyang have stalled since Trump and Kim’s second summit in Vietnam in February ended without a deal.

But Trump has continued to express confidence in the North Korean leader, dismissing the regime’s recent short-range ballistic missile tests as unimportant.

Hours earlier Trump made similar remarks as he discussed Iran’s potential.

“And you know who else has great potential? North Korea. Kim Jong-un,” he said. “And I don’t think North Korea wants to blow it. Because if they blow it, it won’t be good.”

Asked about the possibility of another meeting with Kim, Trump said Sunday that they will “probably have one.”