In Brief

Donald Trump threatens Kim Jong Un ahead of summit

The US president said North Korea could suffer the same fate as Libya - before backtracking

Donald Trump last night issued a blunt threat to North Korea, appearing to suggest that Kim Jong Un could face the same fate as Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi if he didn’t strike a deal at next month’s summit in Singapore.

Asked about a statement by his national security adviser, John Bolton, who said last weekend that the “Libyan model” might be a suitable framework for denuclearisation, Trump said: “The model, if you look at that model with Gaddafi, that was a total decimation. We went in there to beat him. Now that model would take place if we don’t make a deal, most likely.”

The president “appeared to be unaware” that Bolton was referring to the 2003 agreement to hand over Libya’s nuclear arms in exchange for sanctions relief, says The Guardian. Instead, he “interpreted the ‘Libyan model’ to mean the 2011 Nato intervention in Libya”, which resulted in the death of Gaddafi at the hands of rebel forces.

Trump later appeared to retreat from his threat - and contradict Bolton - in a joint appearance with his national security adviser. “The Libyan model isn't a model that we have at all when we're thinking of North Korea,” he said.

Any deal with North Korea “would be with Kim Jong Un, something where he’d be there, he’d be in his country, he’d be running his country, his country would be very rich, his country would be very industrious”, Trump added.

These remarks “represented a remarkable public guarantee aimed at trying to assuage the North Koreans” ahead of the Singapore summit, says The Washington Post.

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