Trump blames Cohen testimony for failure of summit with North Korea

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un bids farewell to the crowd before boarding his train to depart for North Korea at Dong Dang railway station in Vietnam on Saturday.—Reuters

Baier, who was in Hanoi, Vietnam for Trump's summit with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, was pushing back on the US president's claim in a tweet that Michael Cohen's testimony before Congress last week could have contributed to the failure of the summit.

"I never think it is helpful to have, I don't care what president's in office, to have contentious hearings like that when there is some serious negotiations happening overseas", said Rogers.

Last week's meeting between Trump and Kim broke down over what the Americans said were North Korea's excessive demands for sanctions relief in exchange for a limited offer to shut down its ageing main nuclear complex in Yongbyon.

The UN Security Council has so far restricted sanctions exemptions to non-commercial infrastructure projects and would likely need to pass an entirely new resolution on North Korea for inter-Korean economic activities to resume, which is hard to imagine until Kim takes deeper steps toward completely and verifiably relinquishing his nuclear weapons, said Lim Soo-ho, an analyst at the Seoul-based Institute for National Security. He also called the president a liar, racist and conman.

Bolton also sought to explain Trump's comments about taking Kim's word about Otto Warmbier, the American college student who was held prisoner in North Korea and was sent home in a vegetative state and later died.

"This is, I think, the result of a president who is not prepared for these kinds of negotiations, a staff that is not well-prepared and is essentially flying by the seat of its trousers".

But U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton appeared on several Sunday morning talk shows to say last week's summit between Trump and Kim was not a failure, even though talks fell apart with no agreements.




"Look, the president made it very clear he considers what happened to Otto Warmbier an act of brutality that's completely unacceptable to the American side", Bolton told CNN host Jake Tapper on Sunday.

The summit's collapse followed the leaders' historic meeting in Singapore that produced only a vague commitment from Kim to work "toward complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula".

Bolton conceded that North Korea is continuing to produce nuclear fuel and said while "there is no expiration date" on further talks, future negotiations with North Korea are in limbo.

House Democrats arranged for Cohen to testify before an oversight committee.

But Bolton said that Trump's view is that he "gave nothing away".

Moon went on to stress the importance of the role Seoul has in US-North Korea dialogue, asking concerned ministries to seek ways to aid talks on all levels between the two countries. They described it as an effort to support diplomacy aimed at resolving the North Korean nuclear crisis. "While I believe the United States-North Korea negotiations will eventually reach an agreement, it's never desirable for a vacuum in dialogue or stalemate to be prolonged", he said, urging South Korean officials to find ways for the USA and North Korea to narrow their differences.

The maneuvers have been a perennial target of North Korean fury - condemned by Pyongyang as provocative rehearsals for war.

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