Pope Francis praised U.S. President Donald Trump for his meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and said he hoped it would lead to peace.
‘In the last few hours we saw in Korea a good example of the culture of encounter. I salute the protagonists, with a prayer that such a significant gesture will be a further step on the road to peace, not only on that peninsula, but for the good of the entire world,’ he said at his weekly address in St. Peter’s Square.
Trump became the first sitting U.S. president to set foot in North Korea on Sunday when he met its leader, Kim Jong Un, in the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ) between the two Koreas and agreed to resume stalled nuclear talks.
Shortly after the pair greeted each other with a handshake Sunday, Trump was hailed as ‘courageous’ by the North Korean leader.
Trump in turn praised the ‘power’ of Kim’s voice – then criticized his predecessor and faulted the media for down-playing his achievements.
‘This has a lot of significance because it means that we want to bring an end to the unpleasant past and try to create a new future, so it’s a very courageous and determined act,’ Kim told Trump through a translator after smiling during their initial handshake greeting.
‘You’re the first U.S. president to cross this line,’ Kim told him, moments after Trump became the first American president to venture into North Korean territory. Trump announced after the meeting that in the ‘near future’ the two sides would be able to ‘get some good results after concrete negotiations’ – but with nothing tangible other than the commitment to resume talks.