Trump's 1-on-1 with Kim worries national security experts

Leroy Wright
June 15, 2018

Changi [Singapore], June 12: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un learned about "social and economic development" of Singapore during his surprise night visit here on Tuesday.

The president reminded critics that since he first agreed to meet Kim Jong-un, North Korea stopped testing nuclear weapons, paused missile launches, and returned American hostages to the United States.

11:30 pm (03:30 GMT): Trump and Kim have a working lunch and are joined by Sarah Sanders, Sung Kim & Matt Pottinger.

Mr Trump said the summit would show if a "real deal" could happen, as both sides seek to narrow differences over how to end a nuclear standoff on the Korean Peninsula.

He would not say whether that included the possibility of withdrawing U.S. troops from the Korean Peninsula, but said the context of the discussions was "radically different than ever before".

Earlier, before a row of alternating USA and North Korean flags, the leaders shared a warm 13-second handshake at a Singapore island resort, creating an indelible image of two unorthodox leaders as they opened a conversation that could determine historic peace or raise the specter of a growing nuclear threat.

Kim says through an interpreter that it "was not easy to get here" and that there "were obstacles but we overcame them to be here".

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At 4pm Singapore time the US President will hold a press conference on the day's events.

Just hours ahead of the crunch talks, Kim left his luxury hotel for a night-time stroll around some of Singapore's main sights, even posing for selfies with his guide, the city-state's foreign minister.

North Korea has said it is willing to commit to denuclearisation, but that term is open to interpretation. I think what we're seeing Over the past few months is a creeping normalization of North Korea.

Predicting a tremendous success of the summit with the DPRK leader, Trump said that it was "an honor" to meet face-to-face with Kim and that he would have "a terrific relationship" with the DPRK leader.

While Trump was optimistic about the outcome, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo injected a note of caution, saying it remains to be seen if Kim is honest about his willingness to denuclearize.

In 2014, Trump tweeted dismissively about the possibility that he and Rodman would someday travel to North Korea together.

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