Historic meeting in Singapore

Elias Hubbard
June 14, 2018

President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un are set to meet face to face in Singapore to discuss denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.

Kim met the Singaporean prime minister, Lee Hsien Loong, briefly on Sunday, smiling broadly as the two posed for photographs.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said that the president, secretary of state, White House chief of staff and national security adviser have arrived in Singapore for the 12 June summit. [US] Amb [assador to the Philippines Sung] Kim meets with #DPRK [delegation] today.

The Trump administration has previously insisted on "complete, verifiable, irreversible disarmament" (CVID) of North Korea, with the emphasis on unilateral steps by Pyongyang rewarded by U.S. security assurances. The summit plan had received little coverage in North Korea in the months' long lead-up, but was featured as the top story in the state run newspapers and television broadcasts a day ahead of the unprecedented meeting.

"People call it a historic summit but.it is important to understand that this summit was available to any USA president who wanted to do it and the point is no United States president wanted to do this, and for good reasons", said Christopher Hill, a former lead U.S. nuclear negotiator with North Korea.

In May, North Korea, in a gesture of goodwill, blew up three test mines at the Punggye-ri nuclear site, as well as destroyed security checkpoints and other facilities.

He thanked Singapore's organisation of the summit as if it was "their own family affair". It heralded the summit as part of a "changed era".

As Kim's black Mercedes arrived at the St Regis hotel in downtown Singapore, it was flanked by bodyguards in identical black suits jogging alongside the vehicle.

The area includes the summit venue, Capella Hotel on Sentosa Island and the places around Shangri-La Hotel and the St. Regis Hotel where Trump and Kim are expected to stay, respectively.

For the US, the term means North Korea relinquishing nuclear weapons - but Pyongyang may agree to do so only if certain conditions are fulfilled, experts warn.

It formally referred to Trump by his full name in the Monday report, including his middle initial - the first time it has done so.

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.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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