North Korean leader, Singapore’s PM discuss Korean Peninsula situation


Word does get around, however, and it is quite likely that the prospect of a meeting between Kim and Trump is on the public's radar.

Trump's efforts to make peace with a country that is still technically at war with the United States received backing from his fellow G7 members in a joint statement issued after the U.S. president's departure.

In return for safeguards and potential economic help, Trump demanded "complete, verifiable and irreversible" destruction of North Korea's nukes. "That would be rejected and Trump would walk out".

So just what will a successful meeting between Trump and Kim actually look like?

Previous White House administrations had denied Kim, his father and grandfather, the "reward" of a face-to-face meeting with a sitting United States president.

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"But I've said it many times, who knows?"

"I think within the first minute I'll know", Trump said.

In May, Trump announced he would meet Kim in Singapore on June 12 in a tweet that said "We will both try to make it a very special moment for World Peace!"

President Donald Trump shakes hands with Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong ahead of a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, June 11, 2018, in Singapore.

The North Korean leader has in recent months been trying to shift his image from reclusive tyrant to smiling statesman. "He's got an opportunity, the likes of which I think nearly - if you look into history - very few people have ever had".

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Nobody is pretending North Korea can ape Singapore but the message to Kim of the hermit kingdom is clear - come in from the cold on the steaming hot humid south Asian island of Singapore. The Trump administration also launched the so-called "maximum pressure" campaign that sought to choke North Korea with sanctions. The United States has nuclear weapons.

Trump himself seemed optimistic as well.

The meeting was briefly called off when a top North Korean official said the county was ready for a nuclear showdown and called Vice President Mike Pence "a political dummy".

"Wouldn't it be wonderful if we walked out and everything was settled all of a sudden from sitting down for a couple of hours?" He may be staying at the St. Regis Hotel, where China's President Xi Jinping once stayed. "No, I don't see that happening". Kim had his own harsh words, calling the president a "mentally deranged US dotard".

He thanked Singapore's organisation of the summit as if it was "their own family affair". Again accusing the longtime USA ally of unfair trade practices, he added: "Then Justin acts hurt when called out!"

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"The dismantlement of all of its WMD and ballistic missiles will lead to a more positive future for all people on the Korean Peninsula and a chance of prosperity for the people of North Korea, who have suffered for too long".

Dare I say it, conventional politics would not have got us to the point where we are now.

So the summit was almost derailed by talk from Trump's hawkish National Security Advisor John Bolton of a "Libya model" of disarmament.

North Korea's state-run KCNA agency meanwhile commented for the first time on the landmark meeting, describing the event as an opportunity for the two sides to exchange "wide-ranging and profound views" on bilateral ties. He's now the director of the Carnegie Tsinghua Center, a thinktank in Beijing.

North and South Korea remain technically at war after the 1950-53 conflict ended in an armistice that Seoul's then leader refused to sign and divided the peninsula along the Demilitarized Zone. As a master dealmaker, he'll just know.

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