First lady Melania Trump has not met North Korean leader Kim Jong Un personally, but she has heard enough about him from President Donald Trump that he feels like she has gotten to know him too, the White House clarified Monday.
"President Trump confides in his wife on many issues including the detailed elements of his strong relationship with Chairman Kim," press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement, issued after Trump said in a closing news conference at the annual G-7 summit that he knows the North Korean leader and that his wife has gotten to know him as well, reports Politico.
"I think she would agree with me, he is a man with a country that has tremendous potential," he said, as his wife tilted her head and looked at him.
Trump has continued to praise Kim and has been teasing another summit with him, even though the dictator has been conducting missile tests that have worried U.S. allies in Japan and South Korea.
Trump has downplayed the tests, despite Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe telling him that Japan's "position is very clear" that they are a violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions.
Trump has met with Kim three times, but his wife did not accompany him. Their first meeting was on June 2018, but the first lady did not accompany him because she was under orders not to fly because of a medical procedure she'd had the month before, reports The Washington Post.
She also did not travel to Hanoi for the second summit, which was abruptly cut off when an agreement couldn't be reached on sanctions and North Korea's plans for dismantling its nuclear weapons programs.
Further, when Trump and Kim met at the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea, Trump's daughter, Ivanka and her husband, Jared Kushner traveled along and also crossed the border briefly, but the first lady was not there.
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