Trump contradicts USA military stance on Korea war games

Lester Mason
June 13, 2018

"South Korea will have mixed feelings toward Trump's remarks", said Lee Il-woo, a director at Korea Defense Network in Seoul.

A spokesman for Iran's Foreign Ministry said during a weekly briefing with reporters Monday that Iran views the Trump-Kim summit with "great pessimism", the Times of Israel reports.

Trump and Kim signed a document on Tuesday stating that Pyongyang would work toward "complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula".

The U.S. had rejected such proposals in the past, but North Korea has declared an end to testing its nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles, and now Trump appears ready to end exercises while talks are ongoing.

"My first question is whether our allies, the South Koreans, were consulted in advance of suspending these military exercises", he told Reuters.

Trump said he wanted to remove the United States military presence from South Korea, though he provided no timeline.

Later in the day, a North Korean state news agency said that Kim had agreed to meet with Trump in Washington at a later date.

North Korea regularly calls the military exercises provocative preparations for a northward invasion, and numerous scariest standoffs in recent years on the Korean Peninsula have happened when the drills were being staged.


NBC reporter Kelly O'Donnell later added that the vice president's office was saying that Pence meant only that "routine training" with the South Korean military would continue, while the biannual military exercises would be canceled.

"We've adhered to the position of considering [the halt] during the process of dialogue even in the past", he added, asking the outlets to refer to a previous statement from the Blue House.

Hours after Trump's declaration, the Pentagon on Tuesday afternoon insisted that US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis had not been blindsided by Trump.

"But we believe it is necessary to come up with various measures to improve dialogue more smoothly", the Blue House said.

After Pence met with Republicans on Tuesday to brief them on the historic summit, Colorado Sen. As Trump has softened his stance toward North Korea in the past several months, dropping his "rocket man" insults and threats of military action, Fox News pundits have followed suit.

Colonel Rob Manning, another spokesman, said: "We are going to be aligned with the president", while noting that the readiness of U.S. forces would remain "paramount".

"We're not there yet", he said.

The decision to end the so-called "war games" was announced following summit talks between Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, for whom the exercises have been a source of irritation.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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