Former US president Donald Trump on Friday accused his South Korean counterpart of ripping off the United States, whereas persevering with to focus on his supposed friendship with North Korean chief Kim Jong Un.
“Kim Jong-un of North Korea, who I have gotten to know (and like) under the most trying of circumstances, never respected the current President of South Korea, Moon Jae-in,” Trump mentioned in an announcement.
“President Moon was weak as a leader and as a negotiator, except when it came to the continued, long term military ripoff of the USA… We were treated like fools for decades, however, I got them to pay billions of dollars more for the military protection and services we render.”
“The Biden Administration is not even going to ask for the additional billions South Korea agreed to pay us,” Trump added, referring to present President Joe Biden.
During his presidency, Trump positioned himself as a lead negotiator in peace talks on the Korean peninsula.
He first met in June 2018 with Kim in Singapore, the first-ever summit between the nations nonetheless technically at conflict, and later mentioned the 2 leaders “fell in love.”
The pair met twice extra throughout Trump’s time in workplace, and North Korea held off on nuclear and missile checks — however analysts say Pyongyang has stored advancing its weapons packages.
In March, South Korea agreed to pay 13.9 p.c extra towards the price of the US troop presence on the peninsula, in a six-year deal resolving a difficulty that festered underneath the Trump administration.
The monetary dispute had bedeviled the 2 allies’ safety alliance after Trump — who took a transactional method to overseas coverage — repeatedly accused South Korea of freeloading.
Washington stations round 28,500 troops in South Korea to defend it from the nuclear-armed North Korea, in addition to to guard US pursuits in northeast Asia.
Under the brand new deal, Seoul has agreed to pay 1.18 trillion gained ($1.03 billion) for 2021, with annual will increase thereafter linked to its protection price range.
The sum represents a 13.9 p.c improve on the roughly $920 million Seoul was paying underneath the earlier settlement, which expired in 2019 — however is a far cry from the Trump administration’s preliminary demand of $5 billion a 12 months.
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