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Ex-US diplomat notes Trump's apparent distrust toward N. Korean leader in FP interview

By Yonhap

Published : May 25, 2024 - 10:12

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Former US President and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump walks on stage as he arrives for a campaign rally in the South Bronx in New York City on Thursday. (AFP-Yonhap) Former US President and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump walks on stage as he arrives for a campaign rally in the South Bronx in New York City on Thursday. (AFP-Yonhap)

WASHINGTON -- Former President Donald Trump viewed North Korean leader Kim Jong-un as someone who would "knife" him in the stomach if there was a chance to do so, a former US diplomat said in a media interview released this week.

In a recent interview with Foreign Policy, Gordon Sondland, who served as Trump's top envoy to the European Union from 2018-2020, made the revelation, drawing a stark contrast with the former president's repeated claim that he "got along very well" with Kim.

"That f---er would knife me in the stomach if he had the chance," Trump was reportedly quoted by Sondland as saying in response to his question about Trump's view on Kim.

The expletive-laced answer appears to indicate Trump's distrust toward the reclusive leader.

On the campaign trail earlier this year, Trump underscored his close ties with the reclusive leader, saying America was "safe" then.

During a meeting with supporters in 2018, Trump even said that he and Kim "fell in love," while boasting that Kim wrote him "beautiful letters."

With Trump seeking to return to the White House in the Nov. 5 election, observers raised expectations that he could leverage his vaunted ties with Kim to create an opening for the resumption of diplomacy with the recalcitrant regime.

Under his personal diplomacy toward the North, Trump had in-person meetings with Kim during his term, including their landmark first summit in Singapore in June 2018. (Yonhap)