Donald Trump calls critics of North Korea summit 'haters and losers'

Roman Schwartz
June 12, 2018

It's the first time a sitting US president has met with N. Korea's chief, making the summit historic and quite the diplomatic gesture.

His comments echoed those of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo who said on Monday talks between the countries were "moving quite rapidly and we anticipate they will come to their logical conclusion even more quickly than we had anticipated".

It appears to reflect a new confidence among officials in North Korea that the isolated country has really been accepted onto the world stage.

Citing the return of American hostages and a suspension of North Korean nuclear testing, Trump said that "these pundits, who have called me wrong from the beginning, have nothing else they can say!"

It's unclear what Trump and Kim might decide Tuesday.

The summit is being held at a hotel on Sentosa, a popular tourist island a few hundred metres off the Singapore mainland and started at 1pm.

Mr Trump said he was feeling "really great" and Mr Kim said North Korea and the United States had overcome obstacles to be able to hold talks, saying it "was not easy to get here".

Kim Jong Un's sister Kim Yo Jong accompanied her brother to the historic summit in Singapore, but in separate flights amid security concerns by the secretive regime, according to multiple reports.

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President Moon Jae-in and his cabinet watched the start of the summit before their morning meeting at Cheong Wa Dae ("Blue House"), the South Korean news agency Yonhap reported.

Officials of the two sides held last-minute talks to lay the groundwork for the summit of the old foes, an event nearly unthinkable just months ago, when they were exchanging insults and threats that raised fears of war.

Wearing a Make America Great Again baseball cap and a T-shirt bearing the name of his sponsor Potcoin, Rodman sobbed as he described his feelings about the summit and recalled the abuse he had received over his controversial visits to Pyongyang to meet Kim. Trump traveled to Singapore from Canada, where he attended a meeting with other world leaders.

Beyond the impact on both leaders' political fortunes, the summit could shape the fate of countless people - the citizens of impoverished North Korea, the tens of millions living in the shadow of the North's nuclear threat, and millions more worldwide. This contrasted with Kim, who had comparatively less to lose, having already scored a major win through Trump's agreement to meet him.

This combination of file photos show U.S. President Donald Trump, left, in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington on May 16, 2018, and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un during a meeting in North Korea, in the photo provided on May 18, 2018.

The summit is not expected to last beyond Tuesday, with both leaders set to leave Singapore shortly after concluding their meetings. Past nuclear deals have crumbled over North Korea's reluctance to open its doors to outsiders.

The summit is scheduled to begin at 9am, the White House said. And I believed in North Korea.

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