President Donald Trump told reporters on Monday afternoon that he has proposed the demilitarized zone (DMZ) between North and South Korea as a potential location for a U.S.-North Korea denuclearization summit.
Trump had just concluded a joint press conference with Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari in the White House Rose Garden when he returned to the podium to answer shouted questions about the potential denuclearization summit. Trump acknowledged that “various countries including Singapore” are under consideration for the summit, as well as the DMZ. He mentioned the Peace House and Freedom House in the DMZ, remarking, “There’s something that I thought was intriguing … some people maybe don’t like the look of that, some people like it very much.”
President Trump proposed the idea of having the meeting at the DMZ in Monday communications with South Korean President Moon Jae-in. The message was passed along to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.
“There’s something that I like about it because you’re there, you’re actually there where, if things work out, there’s a celebration to be had on the site, not in a third party country,” said Trump. “We are looking at the possibility of doing it in that location. We’re also looking at various other countries including Singapore.”
“The United States has never been closer to potentially having something happen with respect to the Korean peninsula that can get rid of the nuclear weapons … and peace and safety for the world,” said Trump. “Who knows?”
Kim has been open and forward “so far” and has been talking about “getting rid of the site … no research, no launching of ballistic missiles, no nuclear testing, and he has lived up to that for a long period of time,” according to Trump.
President Trump said the DMZ site could be a great site for a celebration “if it works out well.”
“If it doesn’t work out well, that’s the way it goes,” resolved Trump. He affirmed his belief that the U.S.-North Korea summit will happen and that the North Koreans very much want it to happen.
“If it’s not a success, I will respectfully leave,” Trump concluded. He identified getting rid of nuclear weapons as a requirement for success.
The White House has previously said that the meeting is slated for May or early June.
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