The world leaders met for the second time in the Vietnam capital over Tuesday and Wednesday this week, when they were expected to make strides in denuclearisation. However, both parties left the summit disappointed.
“It was about the sanctions,” Trump told reporters after the talks ended.
“They wanted the sanctions lifted in their entirety and we couldn’t do that. Sometimes you have to walk and this was one of those times.”
According to reports, Kim had offered to dismantle the Yongbyon complex – a key facility in their nuclear research and production. In return, he wanted all sanctions on North Korea lifted, which Trump was not prepared to do.
Trump also indicated that no dates had been discussed about a potential third meeting.
But according to Stephan Haggard, a Korea expert at the University of California in San Diego, all is not lost.
“This is not necessarily a failure,” he told Reuters.
“Time was short and it is clear that the administration wanted to get more in terms of additional sites outside Yongbyon and was unwilling to partially lift sanctions without more clarity or perhaps more concessions on them.”