U.S. President Donald Trump signaled he’s open to talks with North Korea, even as his advisers expressed skepticism that Kim Jong Un was serious about suspending his nuclear weapons program and engaging in real negotiations.
“They seem to be acting positively. I’d like to be optimistic,” Trump told reporters Tuesday, hours after envoys from South Korea said Kim told them he was ready to give up his nuclear weapons if the safety of his regime was guaranteed.
But a top administration official, briefing reporters on condition of anonymity, said North Korea had earned skepticism in Washington through decades of failed peace deals and that Kim’s regime would need to do more than temporarily halt weapons tests before the U.S. would agree to talks. Many analysts shared those doubts.
“The North Koreans are looking to buy time. They are looking for some relief just as the sanctions are beginning to bite and they are very worried about all the talk of a military strike,” said Sue Mi Terry, a former CIA analyst who’s a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. “I’m highly skeptical that all of a sudden the North Koreans are ready to give up their nuclear weapons and missiles.”
Read the full article in Bloomberg Politics.