2024 Republican candidates slam Trump for praising Kim Jong-un

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A number of Republican presidential candidates, including Ron DeSantis, have criticized Donald Trump after the former president again praised North Korea’s dictatorial leader Kim Jong-un.

The intervention by Trump’s rivals, who have largely avoided attacking the influential frontrunner, is a rare moment of dissension during the campaign.

Trump posted a message of support for Kim on his Truth Social site on Saturday, following North Korea’s nomination to the board of the World Health Organization.

“Congratulations to Kim Jung [sic] UN!” Trump wrote. He posted a link to an article about the appointment to the WHO, which is an agency of the UN.

Trump’s praise of Kim has already sparked controversy.

In 2018, at a rally in Virginia, the former president explained how he and Kim had “fallen in love” when they knew each other as world leaders – and how Kim had written him “beautiful” and ” large letters”. Those letters later ended up among the classified documents Trump kept after losing the presidency to Joe Biden in 2020, being investigated by the special counsel appointed by the U.S. Attorney General. United, Merrick Garland.

The latest outpouring of positivity Trump directed at Kim has once again sparked a political storm.

Over the weekend, DeSantis, who announced his presidential campaign in May, and Nikki Haley condemned the move.

“Kim Jong-un is a thug and a bully, and he tested ballistic missiles against our allies,” Haley told NBC News.

“He threatened us. There is nothing to congratulate him. I mean, he was terrible with his people. It’s been terrible for America, and we need to stop being nice to countries that hate America.

Haley, a former South Carolina governor who served as UN ambassador during the Trump administration, is running for president.

DeSantis, expected to be Trump’s closest rival for the GOP nomination, said he was “surprised” Trump praised a “murderous dictator,” USA Today reported.

Mike Pence, Trump’s former vice president who is expected to launch a presidential campaign this week, was also critical.

“Whether it’s my former running mate or anyone else, no one should praise the dictator in North Korea or the leader in Russia, who launched an unprovoked war of aggression in Ukraine,” Pence said in an interview with Fox News.

“This is a time when we need to make it clear to the world that we stand for freedom and stand with those who stand for freedom.”

Asa Hutchinson, a former governor of Arkansas whose presidential campaign has yet to make a big splash on the national stage, tweeted SATURDAY:

“Kim Jong-un, the tyrant dictator in North Korea should not be congratulated by Donald Trump for his leadership role in the World Health Organization. We punish leaders who oppress their people. We don’t raise them on the world stage.

North Korea was added to the WHO’s board on May 25 in a move that human rights advocates have condemned.

“North Korea, a regime that is starving its own people, has just been elected to the @WHO Board of Directors,” said Hillel Neuer, executive director of human rights organization UN Watch. based in Geneva. wrote on Twitter.

“It means that one of the most horrific regimes in the world is now part of a group that sets and enforces the norms and standards for global healthcare governance. It is an absurd episode for a key UN agency in dire need of soul-searching and reform.

Trump’s praise for Kim and North Korea’s rise to the WHO was surprising given his contempt for the organization during his tenure. The then president suspended US funding for the WHO in 2020, accusing it, without evidence, of withholding information and being too close to China.

Trump then withdrew the United States from the WHO; Joe Biden joined the organization in one of its first acts in office.

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