Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

Trump expresses openness to talk to North Korea

Trump expresses openness to talk to North Korea

Trump claimed credit Wednesday for the inter-Korean dialogue, saying North Korea was feeling the pressure of a US -led campaign of sanctions over its nuclear weapons and missile development.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was "shrewd and mature" and had won the latest standoff with the West over his nuclear and missile programmes.

"I probably have a very good relationship with Kim Jong Un", Trump told The Wall Street Journal. "I'm a very flexible person".

In follow-up questions Trump pushed back against the notion that his relationship with Pyongyang has soured, saying, "you'll see that a lot with me".

Asked if he had spoken with Kim, Mr Trump said: "I don't want to comment on it". I'm not saying I have or haven't.

The report concluded that these activities underscore North Korea's continued efforts to maintain the Punggye-ri site's potential for future nuclear testing.

Trump's relationship with Kim has been primarily distinguished by escalating barbs and insults. North Korea continues to challenge the USA on the world stage.

Satellite imagery shows "significant tunneling" at North Korea's Punggye-ri nuclear test site, a report revealed Thursday. They argue about whose nuclear button is bigger.

In an effort to allay tensions, the USA and South Korea had already agreed to postpone scheduled joint military exercises during the Paralympics Winter Games. The two nations have remained in a state of war and without diplomatic relations since the Korean War ended in 1953 without a peace treaty.

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