Donald Trump has promised peace through strength on the Korean peninsula, reportedly telling his South Korean counterpart that no US military action against Pyongyang is being contemplated while diplomacy is underway strike plan.
In a phone call with South Korea’s president, Moon Jae-in, on Wednesday, Trump expressed his openness to talks with North Korea “at the appropriate time, under the right circumstances” according to a short White House account of the meeting, which gave no further details. The Trump administration has previously sent mixed signals on its preconditions before beginning a dialogue with the regime.
Speaking at the White House, Trump shrugged off reports in the press suggesting his administration was considering punitive air strikes against North Korea to show it is serious about curbing Pyongyang’s development of nuclear and missile capabilities.
Stressing his commitment to military spending, Trump said: “We are going to have peace through strength.”
“I think we’re going to have a long period of peace. I hope we do,” the president added. “We have certainly problems with North Korea but a lot of good talks are going on right now – a lot of good energy … I like it very much .”
According to a South Korean government spokesman, Trump promised Moon there would be no military action “of any kind” strike plan while the dialogue continued between the two Koreas. That dialogue restarted on Tuesday, after a break of two years, in talks in the border village of Panmunjoin, which resulted in North Korean regime agreeing to send a delegation to next month’s Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
Moon briefed Trump on the Panmunjoin talks and went out of his way to thank Trump for his policy of imposing “maximum pressure” on North Korea.
“I think President Trump deserves big credit for bringing about the inter-Korean talks, and I want to show my gratitude,” he told reporters in Seoul. “It could be the result of US-led sanctions and pressure.”
In his version of his conversation with Moon, Trump also emphasized his owned role in creating conditions for the talks to occur strike plan.