Trump touts 'great respect' for North Korea despite renewed missile tests and Abe disagreement

Trump touts 'great respect' for North Korea despite renewed missile tests and Abe disagreement

Trump and Kim

REUTERS/Leah Millis

U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un sit down for a dinner during the second U.S.-North Korea summit at the Metropole Hotel in Hanoi, Vietnam February 27, 2019.

  • President Trump touted the "great respect" between the US and North Korea at a summit in Japan.
  • Trump said that he viewed North Korea's recent missile tests "differently" to his national security advisor, John Bolton.
  • The president also disagreed with Japanese premier Shinzo Abe on the tests which may have violated UN Security Council Resolutions.

President Trump has disagreed with other world leaders and his own staff on whether North Korean missile tests violated UN Security Resolutions.

Trump said on Friday that he was "not bothered" by North Korea's recent missile tests earlier this month, though top Trump officials, like national security adviser John Bolton, have said the tests violate UN Security Council Resolutions.

"My people think it could have been a violation," Trump told reporters on Monday, noting that no nuclear or long-range missiles had been tested, as reported by CNN. "I view it differently."

Abe said he disagreed with Trump's view on North Korea's missile testing, but added that he agreed with Trump on efforts to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula.


"I personally think that lots of good things will happen with North Korea," he said, adding that there was "good respect" built between the US and North Korea. Trump also touted positive relations between the US and North Korea during a summit as part of a trip to Japan.

Trump and Abe discussions included the decades-long issue of North Korea's abduction of around a dozen Japanese nationals in the 1970s and 1980s, and Trump promised to work with Abe to bring the remaining abductees home.

The president also appeared to laugh at Kim's recent mocking of former Vice President and current Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.

"North Korea fired off some small weapons, which disturbed some of my people, and others, but not me," Trump tweeted. "I have confidence that Chairman Kim will keep his promise to me, & also smiled when he called Swampman Joe Bidan [sic] a low IQ individual, & worse. Perhaps that's sending me a signal?"

Bolton said Saturday that the Trump administration has "not heard much" from North Korea since the summit in Hanoi in February, during which Trump refused Kim's request to lift economic sanctions in exchange for dismantling only part of its nuclear weapons system, as reported by the New York Times.