President Trump says he isn't concerned about North Korea testing short-range missiles and that action doesn't violate United Nations Security Council rules, an opinion that he says runs counter to that of his advisers. Mr. Trump made the comments in Japan during a joint press conference with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who also disagreed with the U.S. president on the missile tests.
"My people think it could have been a violation," Mr. Trump said Monday. "I view it differently."
Mr. Trump — who once spoke of addressing North Korea withshould that be necessary — says he has established a good relationship with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, despite the regime's unwillingness to take steps towards dismantling its nuclear weapons program. In recent weeks, North Korea tested several short-range missiles.
Mr. Trump's national security adviser John Bolton believes the acts violated U.N. resolutions, as does Abe. North Korea, in response,
But Mr. Trump appeared unfazed by the tests, and suggested perhaps Kim just wanted attention.
"It doesn't matter. All I know is that there have been no nuclear tests, there have been no ballistic missiles going out, no long-range missiles going out. And I think that someday we'll have a deal. I'm not in a rush," Mr. Trump said.
Talks with North Korea have been at a stalemate since the president's last summit with Kim was cut short in Vietnam.
Mr. Trump also agreed with Kim on former Vice President Joe Biden, saying he thinks he agrees with Kim's assessment that Biden is a low-IQ individual. Mr. Trump tweeted while in Japan, "North Korea fired off some small weapons, which disturbed some of my people, and others, but not me. I have confidence that Chairman Kim will keep his promise to me, & also smiled when he called Swampman Joe Biden a low IQ individual, & worse. Perhaps that's sending me a signal?"
The president stood by that statement in the news conference.
"Kim Jong Un made a statement that Joe Biden is a low-IQ individual, he probably is based on his record. I think I agree with him on that," Mr. Trump said.