See Pics | Here's how Singapore is prepping for historic Trump-Kim meet

11 June, 2018, 09:38 | Author: Jason Torres
  • AP License N  A Created 2018:05:16 12:01:07

Hours after Kim arrived in Singapore, Trump descended from Air Force One.

USA and North Korean officials are meeting Monday at the Ritz Carlton in this island city-state to negotiate before a sit-down meant to settle a standoff over Pyongyang's nuclear arsenal.

Mr Trump's comments, made shortly before his departure for Singapore, underline his recent efforts to curb expectations for the summit, the first between a sitting U.S. president and a North Korean leader.

Officials onboard Air Force One included Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, National Security Adviser John Bolton, White House Chief of Staff John Kelly and White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders.

The two are due to meet on Tuesday on the resort island of Sentosa for their high-stakes summit, the first-ever talks between the United States and North Korean leader and the culmination of a head-spinning diplomatic dance.

"I think it's important at this point in time, when North Korea has advanced its program so dramatically in terms of ability and nuclear power and its ballistic missile program, to define the deal as the complete, irreversible, and verifiable denuclearization of the peninsula".

Kim later met Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and was seen to be smiling broadly during the encounter.

The bodyguards were glimpsed flanking Kim's Mercedes-Benz limousine as it traveled to the St. Regis Hotel in Singapore on Sunday.

Some critics have said the summit is being rushed through, with Trump keen to chalk up his first major foreign policy achievement. "And if we're not willing to do that, we're not going to get a good deal", Graham said, complementing the worldwide community - including China and Russian Federation - for standing behind Trump in regards to sanctions on North Korea.

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Trump is scheduled to arrive at Singapore's Paya Lebar Airbase at 8.35pm and go to the Shangri-La Hotel, according to the White House.

"I want, once more, to offer the beloved people of Korea an especial thought of friendship and prayer that the talks, which will take place in the coming days in Singapore, can contribute to the development of a positive path that guarantees a peaceful future for the Korean peninsula and for the whole world", the Pope said in his regular Sunday address.

Officials remain uncertain what will come out of Tuesday's unprecedented summit, the first of its kind between a sitting US president and the leader of North Korea.

While en route to Singapore, Trump said he looked forward to meeting Kim on what he anticipated would be an exciting day. Just meeting with Trump will also give Kim recognition as the leader of a "normal" country and as an equal of the USA leader. If you're not going to be able to walk away - we didn't walk away from the frightful Iran deal that was signed, and if you look at what's happened, since I signed that deal, Iran and in all fairness, I say it with great respect for the people of Iran, but Iran is acting a lot differently.

After North Korea carried out a series of long-range missile tests that potentially put the U.S. mainland in range of a nuclear strike, Trump promised to respond with "fire and fury".

Sporadic provocations by the North have continued while Pyongyang has made increasing advances in its nuclear arsenal, which it says it needs to defend against the risk of a U.S. invasion.

In a report describing Kim's departure from Pyongyang, KCNA said a "changed era" had come about, adding that views on achieving denuclearisation and a "permanent and durable peace-keeping mechanism on the Korean Peninsula" would be exchanged at the summit.

Even if brief, the meeting could potentially be the start of a broader dialogue between Trump and Kim.

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