A day after President Donald Trump agreed to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the White House said in order for there to be an actual summit meeting, then the Pyongyang regime must follow through on pledges made to South Korean officials that there would be no new missile tests, an effort to de-nuclearize, and major changes in behavior by North Korea.
“We have to see concrete and verifiable actions take place,” said White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who repeatedly told reporters that the U.S. is giving up nothing in order to have this high level summit.
“Nothing is changing from the United States position,” Sanders said. “Let’s be clear, the United States has made zero concessions, but North Korea has made some promises.”
“This meeting won’t take place without concrete actions that match the promises made by North Korea,” she told reporters.
Asked why anyone should trust Kim Jong Un this time – after other promises which were not fulfilled – Sanders simply said there would not be any movement forward, unless there are ‘concrete’ actions by the North Koreans.
“The United States is going to continue that maximum pressure campaign. We are making no concessions,” Sanders added.”
“The President wants to make sure that we de-nuclearize the (Korean) peninsula,” Sanders said.
Asked if there was a risk that Mr. Trump was being played by Kim Jong Un, Sanders rejected that out of hand.
“The President is getting exactly what he wants,” she declared.
As for where and when the talks would be – Sanders said there were no details yet, as she said the United States would wait to see what Kim does.
“I can tell you that the President has accepted that invitation based on that we have concrete and verifiable steps,” taken by the North.
Pressed on whether there was a chance that no meeting between Messrs. Trump and Kim would take place, Sanders said nothing was final.
“I mean, there are a lot of things possible,” Sanders said. “I’m not going to sit here and walk through every hypothetical that could exist in the world.”