Trump speaks well of his relationship with N. Korean dictator

Evan Vucci | AP | BDN
  Evan Vucci | AP | BDN  President Donald Trump speaks in Atlanta

Evan Vucci | AP | BDN Evan Vucci | AP | BDN President Donald Trump speaks in Atlanta

It appeared to be a softening of rhetoric, given that Trump had lectured Secretary of State Rex Tillerson past year that it would be a waste of time "trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man", Trump's nickname for Kim. North Korea has responded to the South's offers to talk, however, Pyongyang has not yet signaled any readiness to engage the dialogue, given the Trump administration's insistence on complete denuclearization.

Asked if he had spoken with Kim, Trump was evasive: "I'm not saying I have or haven't". Kim called the 71-year-old American president "the mentally deranged US dotard".

Trump spoke Wednesday with South Korean President Moon Jae-in, and the Blue House readout of the call said the U.S. president promised he wouldn't attack North Korea while the two Asian nations hold talks. I could give you 20 examples.

Some U.S. officials have suggested that North Korea was using diplomatic overtures to try to drive a wedge between Washington and ally Seoul and did not intend to engage seriously.

Trump has said North Korea won't be allowed to develop a nuclear missile capable of striking the United States, and has threatened war if economic sanctions and negotiations can't avert Kim's ambitions for such a weapon.

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Trump discussed North Korea in a call Thursday with French President Emmanuel Macron of France.

However, Zhao Tong, a North Korea expert at the Carnegie-Tsinghua Center in Beijing, said China's attitude might change if North Korea launched a nuclear-tipped ICBM into the Pacific Ocean or fired missiles toward Guam.

Trump said the stop-and-go nature to his strategy with North Korea is intentional and part of a broader goal.

"That's good for the United States that they can at least start getting back into talks", she said.

The new analysis of the Punggye-ri satellite imagery was done by Frank Pabian, Joseph Bermudez Jr. and Jack Liu, the 38 North website said. He said the US was open to talks with North Korea under the right circumstances.

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