US President Donald Trump said in an interview with Fox News that he did not want to fully abandon sanctions against North Korea unless there is a real program for the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula agreed.
“They wanted to denuke certain areas and I wanted everything… I did not want to give up the sanctions unless we had a real program,” Trump said when asked about sticking points in his talks with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un in Hanoi.
Trump said that the North Korean delegation was not ready for such developments.
“They are not ready for that and I understand that fully. I really do. They spent a lot of time building it … I wanted them to denuke and they would not do the full [denuclearization]. They wanted to do some. And I guess I lot of people would have said ‘it’s a great start.’ But I just did not feel it was right,” Trump explained.
The president noted that the relations between Washington and Pyongyang were “very good” but both he and Kim were not satisfied with the results of the talks that were held in the Vietnamese capital on Wednesday and Thursday and finished abruptly without a deal.
Trump suggested “it was not the right time” to sign an agreement, noting, however, that both sides were “working toward something.”
The president reiterated that the agreement on the complete verified denuclearization of North Korea was a much tougher deal to make, but “that’s the deal we should have.” However, Trump did not rule out that such a deal might not be reached.
On Thursday, the two-day summit abruptly finished with the lack of an agreement or a declaration after the sides failed to reach a consensus on concessions they were ready to make under such a deal.
The White House spokeswoman, Sarah Sanders, said that Trump was unwilling to repeat the mistake of ex-President Barack Obama, who concluded the “bad” Iran nuclear deal, in his relations with North Korea and other states.
President Obama refused to walk away from a bad deal with Iran. President @realDonaldTrump refuses to make the same mistake with Iran, North Korea, or anybody else. President Trump will always put the safety of the American people above politics.
— Sarah Sanders (@PressSec) March 1, 2019
At their first summit in Singapore last June, Trump and Kim expressed in a joint statement their commitment to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula.