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White House Clarifies Trump's Remark on Melania and Kim

He claimed she had 'gotten to know' dictator
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 27, 2019 3:11 AM CDT
Updated Aug 27, 2019 5:03 AM CDT
Melania Trump listens as French President Emmanuel Macron and President Trump attend the final press conference during the G7 summit Monday, Aug. 26, 2019 in Biarritz, southwestern France.   (AP Photo/Francois Mori)
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(Newser) – Melania Trump and Kim Jong Un have not secretly struck up a friendship, the White House clarified after a confusing remark from President Trump at the G7 conference Monday. The president, who brought up North Korea while answering a question on Iran, claimed that the first lady had gotten to know Kim Jong Un, although she has never met the dictator, the Washington Post reports. "With respect to North Korea, Kim Jong Un—who I’ve gotten to know extremely well; the first lady has gotten to know Kim Jong Un, and I think she’d agree with me—he is a man with a country that has tremendous potential," Trump told reporters in Biarritz, France.

Melania Trump did not accompany the president during any of his three meetings with Kim and has never been in the same room as the North Korean leader, although Ivanka Trump was with her father during June's meeting in the DMZ. After Trump made the remark in Biarritz, Melania, who was in the audience, "cocked her head slightly and looked somewhat quizzically at the president," Politico reports. Press secretary Stephanie Grisham later issued a statement. "President Trump confides in his wife on many issues including the detailed elements of his strong relationship with Chairman Kim," she said. "And while the First Lady hasn’t met him, the President feels like she’s gotten to know him too." (Read more Melania Trump stories.)

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