North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said the breakdown in talks with the United States has raised the risks of reviving tensions, and he is only interested in meeting President Donald Trump again if the United States comes with the right attitude, state media KCNA said on Saturday.
Kim said that he will wait “until the end of this year” for the United States to decide to be more flexible, according to KCNA.
“What is needed is for the U.S. to stop its current way of calculation, and come to us with a new calculation,” Kim said in a speech to the Supreme People’s Assembly on Friday, KCNA said.
Trump and Kim have met twice, in Hanoi in February and Singapore in June, building goodwill but failing to agree on a deal to lift sanctions in exchange for North Korea abandoning its nuclear and missile programs.
Trump said on Thursday he is open to meeting Kim again, but in his speech on Friday, the North Korean leader said the outcome in Hanoi led him to question the strategy he embraced last year of international engagement and talks with the United States.
The Hanoi summit “raised strong questions about whether the steps we took under our strategic decision were right, and gave us a sense of caution about whether the U.S. is even really trying to improve the DPRK-U.S. relationship,” Kim said, using the initials of North Korea’s full name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.
In Hanoi, the United States came with “completely unrealisable plans” and was “not really ready to sit with us face-to-face and solve the problem,” Kim said.
“By that sort of thinking, the U.S. will not be able to move us one iota even if they sat with us a hundred, thousand times, and will not be able to get what it wants at all,” he said.
“I will be patient and wait until the end of this year for America’s courageous decision, but it will be hard to get as good a chance as last time,” Kim added.
Kim’s comments signal he won’t cling to talks with the United States forever, said Kim Dong-yup of Kyungnam University’s Institute for Far Eastern Studies in South Korea.
“That probably indicates that the North is triggering plans to diversify its diplomatic relations with other countries,” he said.