Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un met twice, first in Singapore in June 2018 and then in Hanoi in February 2019. The feel-good atmosphere of Singapore was not carried forward to Hanoi. It ended abruptly and the blame game took over. North Korea’s Deputy Foreign Minister Choe Son Hui made her point clear when she said, "We have no intention to yield to the US demands [put forward at the Hanoi summit] in any form, nor are we willing to engage in negotiations of this kind."

CNN reports North Korea is looking at options like suspension of denuclearization talks with the United States.

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Choe Son Hui expressed disappointment on the failure of the leaders to arrive at any agreement in the Hanoi summit. She blamed the American side for the breakdown of talks, describing their stand as being “too demanding and inflexible,” and gave an impression of negativism.

US tries to put the matter in perspective

US National Security Advisor John Bolton did not agree with the observations of Choe Son Hui. He clarified to reporters at the White House that he was in contact with officials in South Korea and also within the US government and will respond later.

The Hanoi summit between Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump in less than 3 minutes. [Image source/Washington Post YouTube video]
The Hanoi summit between Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump in less than 3 minutes. [Image source/Washington Post YouTube video]

Stephen Biegun is the US special representative for North Korea and he commented, “Diplomacy is still very much alive.” He explained that while progress appears to have been slow, both the sides are interacting with each other regularly.

On the subject of recent satellite images pertaining to North Korean missile test sites, Stephen Biegun said no one should draw conclusions from such images.

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He added that if Kim Jong-un decides to resume testing of his nuclear weapons, it would be his decision and Donald Trump would be disappointed. CNN says the failure of the Hanoi summit was because of Kim’s insistence on the lifting of sanctions while Trump’s priority was denuclearization.

There is still hope

According to BBC, North Korea’s Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui says the US lost "a golden opportunity" at the recent summit in Hanoi between President Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un.

A senior official cautions that the North Korean leader might turn away from talks on denuclearization and revert to its nuclear programs. Pyongyang had offered to dismantle one of its nuclear complex sites but the talks collapsed.

Choe Son-hui accused the US of taking a "gangster-like" stance. The dispute seems to be on the sanctions. Her version appears to be different from that indicated by the US side. Anyway, Stephen Biegun appears to be hopeful.

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He has not revealed if there have been any negotiations since the summit. Neither has he mentioned any plans for further talks. However, after the Hanoi summit, the US President had commented about a "good outcome" in the future. Probably, the US will evolve some new strategies.

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