Geingob speaks on upcoming Trump-Kim summit

22 Feb 2019 16:10pm
WINDHOEK, 22 FEB (NAMPA) – As the second meeting between the leaders of the United States and North Korea beckons, President Hage Geingob shed light on the “suffering” Namibia has had to endure amid sanctions imposed on the Asian nuclear powerhouse.
US President Donald Trump and North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un will have their second face-to-face meeting later this month in Vietnam.
The Namibian Head of State hopes that the meeting will yield the desired outcome.
Geingob made these comments while bidding farewell to South Korean Ambassador to Namibia, Kim Dong-Chan at State House on Friday.
Geingob was referring to the North Korean company, Mansudae Overseas Project Group that was responsible for the construction and maintenance of State House.
“We suffered because of the (sanctions on) North Koreans because they built this building (State House). And there were people and we had to take them out because the sanctions were applied,” Geingob said.
He added: “I always get surprised that big powers (US and North Korea) can decide to go all over and shake hands and I [Namibia] am punished, a small person here because we had this building built by North Koreans.”
Geingob continued: “It’s painful. Power determines everything. Might is right.”
The planned meeting follows their summit in Singapore in 2018, during which they agreed to work towards the ‘complete denuclearisation’ of the Korean peninsula.
The stakes for this meeting are higher than in 2018. The two leaders are now under pressure to agree on the definitions for denuclearisation and ‘peace’ on the Korean peninsula, international media has reported.
Geingob also thanked the ambassador for briefing him on the latest developments between the two powerhouses.
“You must make up,” he said in reference to the strained relationship that North Korea and South Korea have had for the better part of the last century.
On his part, Kim told Geingob: “The Korean that this second round of North (Korea) and US summit will be a historic one that will leave the Korean peninsula into (a) place of prosperity and peace from the past conflict.”
He thanked Namibia for its support during his time as ambassador and also expressed pleasure in contributing towards the furtherance of this relationship.
“I’d like first highly (to give) gratitude to the Namibian government which has supported the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula. As far as I know, Namibia has taken the chairmanship of SADC [Southern African Development Community] and has shown significant leadership,” he told Geingob.
The Namibian leader deflected the praises, saying the work he has been doing or decisions taken at SADC level were done collectively.
Kim also vowed to advocate for his country’s embassy to be reopened in Namibia.
“That will be your greatest achievement,” Geingob said lightly.