President Donald Trump announced on Twitter on Friday that he directed Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to cancel his scheduled trip to North Korea.
“I have asked Secretary of State Mike Pompeo not to go to North Korea, at this time, because I feel we are not making sufficient progress with respect to the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula…” tweeted Trump.
According to a source, Trump called off the trip while in a meeting with Pompeo, who was named the new special representative for North Korea.
Pomeo was supposed to leave on Sunday for the scheduled visit.
Back in June, Trump met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore which was deemed a success. Since then the President has expressed frustration with the progress of negotiations with North Korea regarding denuclearization.
Trump also placed blame on China.
“Because of our much tougher Trading stance with China, I do not believe they are helping with the process of denuclearization as they once were (despite the UN Sanctions which are in place),” tweeted Trump.
But Trump did say that a visit in the “near future” isn’t off the table completely.
“…Secretary Pompeo looks forward to going to North Korea in the near future, most likely after our Trading relationship with China is resolved. In the meantime I would like to send my warmest regards and respect to Chairman Kim. I look forward to seeing him soon!” tweeted Trump.
Following the Trump administration’s decision to cancel Pompeo’s trip, a North Korea’s state-controlled newspaper blasted the U.S. for “double dealing” and “hatching a criminal plot.”
The Rodong Sinmun newspaper claimed that the U.S. forces in Japan are staging an air drill aimed at “the infiltration into Pyongyang.”
“Such acts prove that the U.S. is hatching a criminal plot to unleash a war against the DPRK and commit a crime which deserves merciless divine punishment in case the U.S. fails in the scenario of the DPRK’s unjust and brigandish denuclearization first,” writes the paper. “We cannot but take a serious note of the double-dealing attitudes of the U.S. as it is busy staging secret drills involving man-killing special units while having a dialogue with a smile on its face.”
Last week, the International Atomic Energy Agency revealed that North Korea is still developing nuclear weapons.
North Korea insists that with a peace agreement, the country will abandon its nuclear weapon program. While the U.S. wants to see North Korea completely halt the program before agreeing to a peace deal and other concessions. Trump has delayed joint military drills with South Korea in an effort to ease North Korea.
Author’s note: Unfortunately this was expected. North Korea is always testing our boundaries. North Korean papers have accused the U.S. of preparing an invasion and it’s not wrong, we have said that from the beginning. But until the Trump Administration sees that the denuclearization process is done, or at least is irrevocably underway, then a peace agreement can be signed.