Protesters wearing masks of U.S. President Donald Trump, left, and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, march with others in a May Day rally in Tokyo, Tuesday, May 1, 2018. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)
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With just weeks to go before President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un are expected to hold their first-ever summit, Pyongyang on Sunday criticized what it called "misleading" claims that Trump's policy of maximum political pressure and sanctions are what drove the North to the negotiating table.Trump and senior U.S. officials have suggested repeatedly that Washington's tough policy toward North Korea, along with pressure on its main trading partner China, have played a decisive role in turning around what had been an extremely tense situation.But the North's statement on Sunday seemed to be aimed at strengthening Kim's position going into his meeting with Trump. Kim and Trump are expected to meet later this month or in early June.
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