Biden Says He’d Meet Kim Jong Un Only If Nuclear Arsenal Reduced

U.S. Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said he could meet Kim Jong Un if the North Korean leader made moves to reduce his nuclear arsenal.

The comment, made at the presidential debate Thursday, indicates that under Biden there would be a shift in policy toward North Korea back toward one traditionally employed by previous American leaders. President Donald Trump’s unprecedented meetings with Kim since 2018 have yet to lead to any significant steps to reduce North Korea’s atomic arsenal.


For more on North Korea:
  • Kim Jong Un’s ‘Monster’ ICBM Meant to Overwhelm U.S. Defenses
  • How Kim Jong Un Keeps Advancing His Nuclear Program: QuickTake
  • Kim Jong Un Shows Off New ICBM Built During Talks With Trump
  • Kim Jong Un Calls ‘80-Day Battle’ to Boost North Korea Economy

At the debate, Trump reiterated a claim that his diplomacy, which has included three face-to-face meetings with Kim, has prevented a nuclear conflict.

“We’re not in a war,” Trump said. “We have a good relationship. You know, people don’t understand, having a good relationship with leaders of other countries is a good thing.”

Earlier this month, Kim rolled out a new ballistic missile that weapons experts said was designed to carry nuclear warheads to the U.S., in a massive military parade that appeared calibrated to show strength at home and abroad without provoking Trump.

Still, the parade showed how far Kim’s weapons program has advanced over the past two years, despite Trump’s claim that North Korea was “no longer a nuclear threat.” The spectacle underscored how the country will remain one of the U.S.’s biggest strategic challenges regardless of whether Trump or Biden win on Nov. 3.

North Korea has extolled Trump’s “mysteriously wonderful” chemistry with Kim, while denouncing Biden as a “rabid dog” whose candidacy is “enough to make a cat laugh.”

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