[Newsmaker] Mixed reactions in Singapore to Trump-Kim summit cancellation


"We'll see what happens", Trump said before leaving the White House to deliver the commencement address at the nearby U.S. Naval Academy. Their euphoria shifted to unease before sinking into a funk upon learning as they awoke Friday that Trump had canceled the summit, citing hostility in recent North Korean comments.

The Hill: "Dems after briefing: "No evidence" spy placed in Trump campaign" -"Congressional Democrats said after a closed-door briefing with top Justice Department officials Thursday that there is "no evidence" that the Federal Bureau of Investigation placed a spy in the Trump campaign, hitting back at a claim by President Trump". The group had erected cardboard cutouts celebrating Moon and Kim's recent meeting at the DMZ.

Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye Gwan called Mr. Trump's decision "unexpected" and "very regrettable", and said the cancellation of the talks shows "how grave the status of historically deep-rooted hostile North Korea-U.S. relations is and how urgently a summit should be realized to improve ties".

For President Donald Trump, it was just another exercise in what one Trump friend approvingly called 'the art of the deal'.

"I don't think Trump is doing the right thing if he wants to win the Nobel Peace Prize". One sign, written in English, read "withdraw USA troops".

In a letter to Kim, Trump said Thursday he would not go ahead with the summit in Singapore, following what the White House called a "trail of broken promises" by the North.

Trump said USA and North Korean officials are engaged in talks aimed at reviving plans for the summit.

U.S. President Donald Trump said Friday the much-anticipated summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un that he, Trump, canceled Thursday could still place as originally scheduled.

But Trump also threw Moon under the metaphorical bus. In an apparent response to Choe's claim that Washington had asked for dialogue first, Trump wrote, "We were informed that the meeting was requested by North Korea, but that to us is totally irrelevant". One day after calling off aplanned meeting in Singapore between himself and Kim - and warning the North Korean dictator about the United States' formidable nuclear arsenal - Trump took a more conciliatory tone, saying that further discussions could lead to "enduring prosperity and peace".

But clearly Moon faces the greatest test of his diplomatic skills since he used his hosting role for the Winter Olympics in February to renew the push to resolve the nuclear standoff with Pyongyang.

It was South Korean officials who first informed the United States earlier this year that Mr Kim was prepared to discuss potential nuclear disarmament. "It is just a standard negotiation tactic from USA to see how badly North Korea wants this".

Both Pence and Trump's hawkish National Security Advisor John Bolton had raised the specter of Libyan leader Moamer Khadafi, who gave up atomic weapons only to die years later at the hands of US-backed rebels.

Washington has made it clear it wants to see the "complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation" of the North.

The minister, especially, emphasized the need to keep the momentum from the inter-Korean summit in April and the opportunity for negotiations between North Korea and the US alive.

For decades, North Korea has been pushing a concept of "denuclearization" that bears no resemblance to the American definition, vowing to pursue nuclear development unless Washington removes its troops from South Korea and the American "nuclear umbrella" defending South Korea and Japan. But they would have focused on ways of denuclearising the Korean peninsula and reducing tensions.

Nearby, across the street from the U.S. Embassy, about 20 more protesters aligned with South Korea's leftist People's Democracy Party (PDP) had gathered with placards bearing images of Trump sporting Nazi regalia and surrounded by warplanes. Moon may lose the driver's seat for good if Pyongyang reverts to provocative weapons tests, which would bring back US talk of using military force against the North.

Kim Kye Gwan, first vice minister of foreign affairs, issued a statement earlier on Friday saying North Korea was "willing to give the USA time and opportunities" to reconsider talks.