North Korea leader Kim arrives in Singapore ahead of Trump meeting
North Korea leader Kim arrives in Singapore ahead of Trump meeting
Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un AP
12 June, 2018, 11:37
With a handshake in Singapore, President Trump and Kim Jong Un made history Tuesday morning in the first meeting between a sitting USA president and the head of the North Korean regime.
Donald Trump says he will have a "terrific relationship" with Kim Jong Un as they appear together for the first time in Singapore.
Singapore's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement that Mr Kim and Mr Lee discussed relations between their countries, as well as developments in North Korea and the region, including recent positive developments on the Korean peninsula. It declares that their summit in Singapore "was an epochal event of great significance in overcoming decades of tensions and hostilities between the two countries".
Both sides were finalizing preparations for the unprecedented summit, which was to kick off at 9 a.m. Tuesday with a handshake between Trump and Kim, an image sure to be devoured around the world.
Trump's arrival came just hours after Kim, wearing his trademark dark "Mao suit" and distinctive high-cut hairstyle, landed in the ultra-modern city-state on his longest trip overseas as head of state.
The two leaders met for about 40 minutes and were joined only by interpreters. Trump and Kim planned to meet one on one, joined only by translators, for up to two hours before admitting their respective advisers, a USA official said.
He also shared a photo of himself and Trump and told the entire world that he's "honored" to call the president a friend.
The sides first spoke through intelligence channels, with USA analysts working to determine Kim's true willingness to abandon a nuclear program started by his grandfather and viewed by Pyongyang as a security blanket from outside aggressors. The North Koreans have long wanted to be seen with the US president, and they are getting that and so they are bragging about that to their people. "Very, very quickly. Absolutely", Trump said when asked by reporters if Kim had agreed to denuclearize.
Kim may be interested in getting aid and eventual investment to stabilize and then rebuild a crumbling economy.
Trump had lowered expectations for the results of the summit in the last couple weeks, saying it was the start of a process meant for the two leaders to get to know each other.
Analysts had expected both Trump and Kim to sell the summit as a success regardless of outcome since both have much at stake.
Journalists and White House staff stand under Air Force One, carrying U.S. President Donald Trump to Singapore for an anticipated summit with North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un, as it is stopped for refueling in Chania, Greece, June 10, 2018.
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