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Trump highlights 'tremendous progress' made with N. Korea, adding time is not of essence Updated: 2019-07-17 13:11:32 KST

North Korea's Foreign Ministry has condemned the U.S., saying its scheduled joint military exercises with South Korea could put denuclearization talks at risk.
The ministry warned Tuesday that it could reconsider its agreement to resume working-level talks if the exercise takes place as planned next month, and it may also consider resuming nuclear tests.

The North has long criticized such joint exercises as (quote) "a rehearsal for war."
This comes as the Pentagon announced Tuesday that Seoul and Washington are preparing a routine joint training program in August.
A spokesperson for the Pentagon explained that the joint exercise has been scaled back in order to facilitate diplomacy with the regime.

Meanwhile, President Trump has highlighted that his administration has made significant progress in regards to North Korea.
Speaking at a Cabinet meeting in Washington on Tuesday, Trump said he doesn't feel any pressure to reach a quick denuclearization deal with Pyeongyang.

"The relationship is very good. I think we've made tremendous progress on North Korea. And again, time is not of the essence but I think good things will ultimately happen."

This seems to be a reaffirmation of his administration's stance that it will not rush into concluding a deal with the North.
Kim Hyo-sun, Arirang News.
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