Trump’s remarks on future meetings do not signal little progress: Cheong Wa Dae
SEOUL, The possibility of future meetings between the leaders of the United States and North Korea does not mean there are apparent difficulties or failures with their upcoming summit, a spokesman of Seoul's presidential office Cheong Wa Dae said Thursday.
The remarks from Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom came hours after U.S. President Donald Trump said he does not think his upcoming summit with North Korea's Kim "will be the last meeting by any chance."
Many welcomed Trump's remarks as showing his willingness to continue his dialogue with the reclusive North Korean leader down the road, but some have raised concerns that they may reflect Trump's low expectations for progress at the upcoming summit set to be held in Hanoi next Wednesday and Thursday.
"This is my personal, subjective interpretation, but I do not believe the reason President Trump said it will not be the last was to intentionally lower expectations," Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom told a daily press briefing.
"I believe (Trump) simply explained current conditions regarding the contents of the meeting and what stage it is in," he added.
The presidential spokesman also insisted that the United States and North Korea would have to continue holding various discussions at various levels, including summit meetings, as they move down the path of complete denuclearization of the North.
"It is not something that can be resolved all at once like pulling the plug of a television set, and because it will take a considerably long time and must be done in stages, I understand (what Trump meant to say was that) there will be follow-up talks in different stages," Kim said.
Trump was earlier quoted as telling his South Korean counterpart, Moon Jae-in, that he expects to make "great progress" at his second meeting with the North Korean leader.
On Wednesday, in Washington, the U.S. president repeated that he thinks "we will accomplish a lot."
Source: Yonhap news Agency