Donald Trump meets Kim Jong Un

Blanche Robertson
June 12, 2018

Trump, speaking in Canada on Saturday, said any agreement at the summit would be "spur of the moment", underscoring the uncertain outcome of what he called a "mission of peace".

Before signing what Trump described as a "comprehensive" document, Kim said the two leaders had a historic meeting "and made a decision to leave the past behind".

Against a backdrop of US and North Korean flags, the two first shook hands for about 12 seconds, and Trump at one point grabbed before leading him toward another room where they are scheduled to meet one-on-one, with just translators present, for about 45 minutes. "Thank you very much".

As the meeting opened at the Capella Hotel on Singapore's Sentosa Island, the two men entered with somber expressions that quickly gave way to smiles.

The talks - unimaginable just a few months ago - will focus on North Korea's controversial nuclear programme.

Director of the National Economic Council Larry Kudlow went as far as to suggest Trudeau was attempting to specifically undermine Trump and damage his negotiating position ahead of his summit with Kim. Trump has said he hopes to make a legacy-defining deal for the North to give up its nuclear weapons, though he has recently sought to manage expectations, saying more than one meeting may be necessary. A U.S. official says Monday that the leaders will meet for up to two hours before an expanded bilateral meeting with their respective advisers.

The North Korean autocrat's every move will be followed by 3,000 journalists who have converged on Singapore, and by gawkers around the world, up until he shakes hands with Trump on Tuesday.

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"If I think it won't happen, I am not going to waste my time".

After some initial exchanges lasting about half an hour, Mr Trump and Mr Kim emerged, walking side-by-side through the colonnaded hotel before re-entering the meeting room, where they were joined by their most senior officials.

Dessert included dark chocolate tartlet and Häagen-Dazs vanilla ice cream.

South Koreans watch on a screen reporting on the U.S. President Trump meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un at the Seoul Railway Station on June 12, 2018 in Seoul, South Korea. But no one can credibly suggest that a durable or verifiable denuclearization of the Korean peninsula can be achieved when North Korea remains a completely closed and totalitarian state.

Suzanne DiMaggio, who facilitated the first official discussions between North Korea and the Trump administration past year, recently said that without aides present "the fear is that he [Trump] might give away too much". Kim was scheduled to leave earlier in the day.

Among those joining the leaders on the USA side were Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, White House chief of staff John Kelly and national security adviser John Bolton.

Trump spoke to Moon and Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, both key allies of Washington in the region, to discuss developments ahead of the summit.

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