Kim Jong Un Had a New Year's Message for Trump

North Korean leader declares intention to continue talks with US
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jan 1, 2019 6:00 AM CST
Kim Jong Un Had a New Year's Message for Trump
People watch a TV screen showing North Korean leader Kim Jong Un delivering a New Year's speech, at Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019.   (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said Tuesday he hopes to extend his high-stakes nuclear summitry with President Donald Trump into 2019, but also warns Washington not to test North Koreans' patience with sanctions and pressure, the AP reports. During his televised New Year's speech, Kim said he's ready to meet with Trump at any time to produce an outcome "welcomed by the international community." However, he said the North will be forced to take a different path if the United States "continues to break its promises and misjudges the patience of our people by unilaterally demanding certain things and pushes ahead with sanctions and pressure." Kim also said the United States should continue to halt its joint military exercises with ally South Korea and not deploy strategic military assets to the South.

Washington and Pyongyang are trying to arrange a second summit between Trump and Kim, who met in Singapore on June 12, but officials have yet to reschedule a meeting between US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and senior North Korean officials after the North canceled it at the last minute in November. "It is the unwavering position of our party and the republic's government and my firm will that the two countries as declared in the June 12 joint statement ... take steps to establish a permanent and stable peace regime and push toward the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula," Kim said in his speech. "Therefore, we have already declared domestically and internationally and took various actions showing our commitment that we will no further create or test nuclear weapons and will not use or spread them." (Click for much more from the speech, plus analysis, or check out Vladimir Putin's end-of-year letter to Trump.)

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