Trump defends North Korea summit, trashes media

Kim Yong Chol and Mike Pompeo shake hands in New York

United States President Donald Trump's surprise announcement in Singapore on suspending war games with South Korea is being formalised on the ground, with an official announcement to put them on hold expected this week.

Trump publicly said last week that he gave his "very direct number" to Kim.

-Three American detainees, called hostages by Trump, were sent home in May, the latest in a series of US citizens to be freed in recent years with the intervention of high-level USA officials.

After hours of discussions, Trump and Kim signed an agreement committing the United States to unspecified "security guarantees" in exchange for a denuclearized Korean Peninsula.

He argued he was saving a lot of money by stopping the exercises.

This agreement does far less than the US agreements with North Korea in 1994 and 2005, which failed to get rid of that nation's nuclear weapons and missile programs.

However, in a sign Seoul may be open to suspending drills, South Korean President Moon Jae-in said on Thursday his government would need to be flexible when it came to applying military pressure on North Korea if it was honest about denuclearisation. -South Korean war games, which even he deemed "provocative", in an apparent trade for North Korea maintaining its testing moratorium on nuclear weapons and missiles.

"We got along very well".

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When White House reporters later followed up on his comment, Trump said "I'm kidding, you don't understand sarcasm".

He also warned that he could re-instate the drills "immediately" if talks break down, but added that he hoped that would not happen. "Hey, he's the head of a country".

"He speaks and his people sit up at attention". The two met earlier this week to begin to discuss Pyongyang's nuclear program, a summit marked by what Trump said was friendly chemistry between them.

Trump had vowed to prevent that happening and threatened North Korea with "fire and fury like the world has never seen". But no one doubted Trump's capacity to totally annihilate all of North Korea given the "Big Button" the US President always carried with him that would set a thousand nuclear-tipped missiles into pre-planned action against the enemy.

"People want their loved ones to come home", said Pritchard. In one of his tweets after the meeting, Trump said he proved his critics wrong and tweeted - 'We will be fine!'

After she left her position, it was also revealed that Rice requested the unmasking of the identities of some Americans mentioned in intelligence reports connected to the Trump presidential campaign and transition.

"Under the circumstances that we're negotiating a very comprehensive complete deal, I think it's inappropriate to be having war games", Trump told reporters at a press conference following the unprecedented June 12 summit.

Former commander of the Pacific Command Harry Harris, Mr Trump's pick for United States ambassador to South Korea, told U.S. lawmakers last week that North Korea continues to be a nuclear threat and that major military exercises should be paused to give Mr Kim a chance to prove whether he is "serious".

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