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Thursday, September 20, 2018, 

U.S. still hopeful of Trump-Kim summit despite North Korea threat

U.S. still hopeful of Trump-Kim summit despite North Korea threat

Washington, 16 May 2018 (MIA) - The United States is still hopeful that an unprecedented summit with North Korea will take place, in spite of a threat by Pyongyang to pull out, but President Donald Trump is prepared for a tough negotiation, the White House said on Wednesday, Reuters reports.

North Korea threw the June 12 summit into doubt on Wednesday saying it might not attend if Washington continues to insist that it unilaterally give up its nuclear weapons. North Korea also called off high-level talks with South Korea scheduled for Wednesday, blaming U.S.-South Korean military exercises.

“We’re still hopeful that the meeting will take place and we’ll continue down that path but at the same time we’ve been prepared that these could be tough negotiations,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said.

“The president is ready if the meeting takes place,” she told Fox News. “If it doesn’t, we’ll continue the maximum pressure campaign that’s been ongoing.”

Sanders said the North Korean comments were “not something that is out of the ordinary in these types of operations.”

North Korea on Wednesday cast doubt on whether the planned meeting between leader Kim Jong Un and Trump, which is set for Singapore, would be held.

“If the U.S. is trying to drive us into a corner to force our unilateral nuclear abandonment, we will no longer be interested in such dialogue and cannot but reconsider our proceeding to the...summit,” said Kim Kye Gwan, North Korea’s first vice minister of foreign affairs. ik/18:39

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