SEOUL, South Korea — Taking an unprecedented step onto North Korean soil, President Donald Trump announced Sunday that Washington and Pyongyang will relaunch stalled nuclear talks. The statement came during an extraordinary last-minute meeting with Kim Jong Un, the North Korean leader.
Following this meeting, Wichita Falls resident and Texas House of Representative Rep. James Frank responded on Facebook.
Frank said, ” I have no idea whether Trump’s meeting in North Korea will bear fruit, but one thing I know for sure is that relationships don’t get better by NOT talking to each other. This is something that every person in both political parties (myself included) should remember and practice.”
Side-by-side with Kim in the heavily-fortified demilitarized zone, Trump became the first sitting U.S. president to cross the 1953 armistice line separating North and South Korea, then joined Kim for a roughly 50-minute meeting.
It was their third since Trump took office, but none have yet yielded a nuclear deal.
“Stepping across that line was a great honor,” Trump said, later adding that it was “something incredible.”
Trump deemed the meeting a victory, announcing that nuclear talks would resume “within weeks” and that the two countries were designating teams of officials to take the lead.
He even invited Kim, who rarely leaves the country, to visit him at the White House.
Yet for all the fanfare, there were no signs that the U.S. and the North had made any concrete progress on denuclearization, the issue that has led to North Korea’s estrangement from the world.
And veteran nuclear negotiators and North Korea experts immediately questioned whether Trump, by staging a high-profile photo-op absent nuclear concessions, was bestowing legitimacy on Kim and undermining global pressure to force the North to accept a denuclearization deal.
“We can only call it historic if it leads to something,” said Victor Cha, a former Asia director at the White House and an NBC News contributor.