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US, North Korea Sign Agreement at Historic Summit

12 June 2018, 11:41 | Devin Moran

Mr Kim inspecting the honour guard in Pyongyang before departing for Singapore

Mr Kim inspecting the honour guard in Pyongyang before departing for Singapore

Trump and Kim will first meet one-on-one, only with their translators, according to White House aides, before they are joined by senior government officials. He says, "We're going to have a great discussion and a terrific relationship".

White House spokesman Raj Shah said Trump's schedule change was not in response to Kim but instead due to the quick-moving negotiations between the two sides.

Mr. Trump threatened to unleash "fire and fury" on North Korea past year, and a North Korean official warned of a "nuclear-to-nuclear showdown" just a few weeks ago.

Trump spoke only briefly in public on Monday, forecasting a "nice" outcome.

The two men kicked off their summit with a handshake shortly after 9 a.m. local time Tuesday - 9 p.m. Monday in NY - marking the first face-to-face encounter between a sitting USA president and a North Korean leader.

Korean-Americans make a toast at a party to watch the Trump-Kim Singapore summit in Koreatown, Los Angeles. That is, experts suggest Pyongyang may only agree to give up its nukes in exchange for the US terminating its military presence in South Korea and ending its regional nuclear umbrella, a security arrangement in which Washington promises in-kind retaliation on behalf of close allies if they are attacked with nuclear weapons.

While advisers say Trump has been reviewing briefing materials, the president insists his gut instincts will matter most when he gets in the room with Kim. On a larger level, the astronomical cost of the nuclear weapons program contributes to the massive poverty in North Korea, among the world's poorest countries.

The moment, as it played out, was slightly awkward, with Mr Kim seen staring at the ground and Mr Trump fidgeting with his hands.

As the two leaders met, Singapore navy vessels, and air force Apache helicopters patrolled, while fighter jets and an Gulfstream 550 early warning aircraft circled.




Neither Trump nor Kim gave any indication about the contents of the document, though the president said he would elaborate for the media later Tuesday. Dozens of cameras snapped photos as the two men first came together in front of a background of USA and North Korean flags.

Trump has said that he would be willing to stay longer and potentially stretch the summit out over two days depending on how talks were proceeding.

Trump, who is seeking to persuade Kim to abandon his nuclear weapons program, called it "my honor" as he became the first sitting US president to sit down with a North Korean leader.

Kim has rejected calls to unilaterally give up his weapons in return for economic aid, and instead has proposed a step-by-step denuclearization process.

Sanctions on North Korea would remain in place until that happened, Pompeo said on Monday.

He added there was no mention of verifiable or irreversible denuclearization in the Singapore summit agreement.

Trump said Saturday that he believes the North Korean leader will "surprise on the upside".

But in return, Washington would offer "different and unique" guarantees "to provide them sufficient certainty that they can be comfortable that denuclearisation is not something that ends badly for them".



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