The Deal is Off! Donald Trump Leaves the Table Early As Kim Refuses to Surrender Nukes!
The deal is off and the sanctions remain in force. That's the result of the most vividly discussed international event in recent news: Donald Trump's meeting with Kim Jong-un. However, there is one positive aspect. The North Korean leader has a new image in the eyes of the world. He smiled a lot and looked more confident than Trump. And still, why did Trump and Kim end their meeting early and leave the joint lunch?
Our special reporter, Sergey Mingajev, with the details from Vietnam.
For the first time in history, the North Korean leader answered the question of a Western journalist while sitting in front of the US President.
Kim Jong-un, Supreme Leader of North Korea: «There are people who welcome this meeting. There are people who feel skeptical. I'm sure that they are all watching us sit next to each other as if they were watching a sci-fi movie».
At the beginning of the official portion, both leaders were optimistic. Kim and Trump went to a secluded pavilion at the Metropole hotel to talk in private. During their entire private conversation, Kim's permanent assistant at the negotiations, his younger sister, Kim Yo-jong, stood at the door. After that, the leaders went to the court and headed to the meeting in the expanded format. Both seemed friendly. Trump was even being a little protective when he called down one of the accompanying journalists.
— Are you ready yet to take concrete steps towards denuclearization or not?
Donald Trump: That's what we're currently discussing. And don't raise your voice, please. It's not the same thing as talking to Trump.
This is the final footage of Kim and Trump standing together. 30 minutes later, the White House Press Service asks the journalists accredited to Trump's press conference to immediately take the buses. Hanoi even restricted traffic to let them pass. Accompanied by police cars we hastily rode the tourist buses across the city without stopping at red lights to the Marriott hotel. There, we discovered that Trump had left the Metropole hotel. There was a set table in the room where the friendly lunch was supposed to take place. It took the US delegation a long time to select the menu. The final footage from the second time in history that American and North Korean leaders held a summit.
Unexpectedly, the summit finished two hours earlier than scheduled. The White House has already announced that the parties couldn't reach an agreement. Journalists who were lucky to attend Donald Trump's final press conference are anxiously waiting for him here, at the Marriott hotel to discover why he refused to have lunch with Kim Jong-un.
Donald Trump began his press conference accompanied by Secretary of State Pompeo. He began talking about something else and only a direct question regarding the sanctions against North Korea made him name the main reason behind the disruption of the summit.
Donald Trump, President of the USA: «They wanted the sanctions lifted in their entirety, we couldn’t do that. They were willing to de-nuke a large portion of the areas that we wanted but we couldn’t give up all of the sanctions for that.»
It was assumed that a joint declaration would've been signed in Hanoi today codifying denuclearization, the main point of the negotiations.
— Are you ready for denuclearization?
Donald Trump: I wouldn't be here if I didn't want to do that.
The legendary pink lady from North Korean TV talked about the Hanoi summit in a unique intonation.
«Mistrust, misconceptions, hostility, and old grudges were trying to sway us from our path but we managed to overcome them and made some mutual accommodations to finally reach Hanoi and have a conversation».
But there was no conversation. The US doesn't seem to have managed to quickly resolve the Korean issue alone. We didn't manage to ask the US President our question. However, Trump answered it while he was talking about the roles of the neighboring states.
Donald Trump: «China's been a big help, and Russia's been a big help too. AS you know, they have mutual borders with North Korea».
Yet, even in Hanoi, the US colleagues showed their true colors. Trump's response to a neutral question asked by a Russian reporter from Sputnik caused a whole wave of mocking comments from the Western news agency employees on their social network pages.
After the press conference, Donald Trump headed straight to the airport. However, he was forced to stay in Vietnam a little longer. Right before takeoff, Trump's airstairs broke.
What seemed like a fictional movie in the morning happened to be a work of a different genre. And it's pretty clear who the director is. Trump summed up his second meeting with Kim Jong-un with the phrase: «Sometimes, it's better to leave.» However, the US President didn't specify why he flew halfway across the world for that.
Sergey Mingajev and Alexey Pechko Vesti, East Asian Office, Hanoi, Vietnam.