Jimmy Carter
Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter waves as he departs the Capitol after attending the presidential inauguration of Donald Trump in Washington, Jan. 20, 2017. Reuters

Former president Jimmy Carter has expressed his eagerness to work with President Donald Trump over North Korea. In an interview published Saturday, Carter also revealed that he had spoken to Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster, Trump's national security advisor on the North Korea issue but has got a negative response till now.

"I told him [McMaster] that I was available if they ever need me," Carter said during the interview.

The 93-year-old also said he was willing to work with Trump and can also go to North Korea amid the ongoing tensions over nuclear weapons to help resolve the crisis.

During the interview with The New York Times' Maureen Dowd, when Carter was questioned about the rhetoric between Trump and North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un, Carter said he was also afraid of the situation.

"I don’t know what they’ll do. Because they want to save their regime. And we greatly overestimate China’s influence on North Korea. Particularly to Kim Jong Un. He’s never, so far as I know, been to China. And they have no relationship. Kim Jong-il did go to China and was very close to them," Carter said.

If Carter joined hands with Trump on the North Korea issue, it wouldn't be the first time Carter collaborated with a president or traveled to North Korea on a diplomatic mission.

In 2010, Carter negotiated the release of an imprisoned U.S. citizen, Aijalon Mahli Gomes, who was sentenced to eight years of hard labor of about $600,000 for entering illegally into North Korea, CNN reported.

In 1994, when the relations between the U.S. and North Korea were almost on the verge of war, Carter had traveled to the hermit kingdom for a private meeting with the then leader Kim Il Sung to broker a peace deal. North Korea pledged to give up its nuclear weapons in return for aid. Carter played a pivotal role in defusing the first North Korean nuclear crisis, reports said.

However, the peace deal collapsed a few years later when the George W. Bush administration accused Pyongyang of a secret atomic arms program, CNN reported.

Last month, during an event, Carter had criticized Trump's foreign policies. "I would send my top person to Pyongyang immediately if I didn’t go myself," he had said, according to The Telegraph.

In the interview with The Times, Carter also spoke about Trump being a constant target of the media. "I think the media have been harder on Trump than any other president certainly that I've known about." "I think they feel free to claim that Trump is mentally deranged and everything else without hesitation," Carter added.

Carter also defended Trump when he was asked whether the president was souring the nation's image in the world with his aggressive style. Carter said: "Well, he might be escalating it but I think that precedes Trump." "The United States has been the dominant character in the whole world and now we’re not anymore. And we’re not going to be. Russia’s coming back and India and China are coming forward."