President Trump said on Friday that his June 12 summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is back on after he canceled it last month.
“Now we’re going to deal,” Trump told reporters. “June 12, we will be in Singapore. It’ll be a beginning. I don’t say, and I’ve never said it happens in one meeting. You’re talking about years of hostility, years of problems, years of hatred between so many different nations.”
Former North Korean intelligence chief Kim Yong-chol spent an hour in talks with Trump in the Oval Office on Friday, after flying to the U.S. on Wednesday and meeting with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to continue planning the summit.
Trump wrote Thursday on Twitter that the meetings were “very good.”
“It’s going to have to be a process, but relationships are building, and that’s a very good thing,” he said, adding that he discussed economic sanctions with Kim Yong-chol.
Trump abruptly canceled the historic summit last month, citing “tremendous anger and open hostility” from the North Korean government. Pyongyang had again threatened the U.S. and stopped responding to U.S. officials’ attempts to coordinate logistics for the meeting.
The White House hopes the summit will be the start of negotiations to ensure the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, a matter that is of paramount importance to South Korea as well as the surrounding nations.
“I think they want to do that, I know they want to do that,” the president said of denuclearization. “They want other things along the line. They want to develop as a country. That’s going to happen. I have no doubt.”
Trump also gave a nod of thanks to President Xi Jinping of China, who he said has “helped me quite a bit with this.”