Trump Wants to Give Speech in DMZ

  • By Lee Ha-won, Lee Yong-soo, Jeong Woo-sang

    June 24, 2019 09:30

    U.S. President Donald Trump wants to deliver a speech in the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas when he visits Seoul this weekend, the Asahi Shimbun reported Friday.

    The news comes amid reports that Trump and North Korean leader are still writing "beautiful" letters to each other after their failed summit in Hanoi in February.

    Cheong Wa Dae said nothing has been decided, but U.S. and South Korean government officials believe Trump's visit to the DMZ could send a message to North Korea seeking a resumption in dialogue.

    Trump wanted to visit the DMZ when he came to South Korea in November of 2017 but was prevented by heavy fog that made it impossible for his helicopter to go there. Trump waited in the helicopter for about an hour hoping for the fog to clear and remains keen to visit because of the symbolic weight of the heavily guarded area.

    On Friday, as soon as Chinese President Xi Jinping returned from a trip to Pyongyang, Trump sent a letter to Kim described by the North Korean leader as "excellent" and "very interesting." Trump and Xi in turn are set to meet on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Osaka later this week.

    One diplomatic source said, "The letter probably did not go into specific details but contained a message reaffirming their friendship and a pledge to meet again."

    But at the same time Trump signed six executive orders extending sanctions against North Korea that went into effect from 2008 to 2017.

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