Flight from Pyongyang lands in Singapore ahead of North Korean leader’s arrival
11 June, 2018, 08:34
Mr Trump and Mr Kim have had an extraordinary up-and-down relationship over the past 18 months, trading insults and threatening war before abruptly changing tack and moving towards a face-to-face meeting.
Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong posted on his official Twitter account a picture of him shaking hands with Kim upon his arrival. "I wish that the summit works out well so that peace comes to the Korean Peninsula", said Cho Ik-Sung, a doctor who lives in Seoul.
Trump and Kim are set to meet on Tuesday at the Capella Hotel on Sentosa for talks which could see North Korea dismantle its nuclear arsenal in return for economic help and security guarantees.
Differing reports stated that Kim was on an Air China aircraft, not a private jet.
Washington hopes the summit will kick-start a process that eventually sees Kim give up his nuclear weapons, read the BBC report, adding that the United States wants North Korea to get rid of its nuclear weapons in an irreversible manner that can be verified internationally.
Trump descended from Air Force One into the steamy Singapore night, greeting officials and declaring he felt "very good" before being whisked away to his hotel via a route lined with police and photo-snapping onlookers. "So at the moment, the wisest approach for China is to just leave North Korea and the United States to it".
UN Security Council Resolution 2270 forbids loaning aircraft, ships and crew to North Korea, but Beijing apparently had USA approval.
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Kim's popularity in South Korea also increased significantly after the inter-Korean summit in April, where he was seen by many as nonthreatening and open to compromise.
He described the meeting scheduled for Tuesday in Singapore as a "one-time shot" for Kim, and Trump said he was about to undertake a "mission of peace" as he left the Group of Seven meeting with world leaders in Canada.
The U.S. president also dangled the prospect of inviting Kim to Washington if the meeting is a success.
Choi's fiery outburst at Trump's national security adviser, John Bolton, and Vice President Mike Pence a fortnight ago was blamed for Trump suddenly, and briefly, cancelling the summit.
US defense and intelligence officials have assessed the North to be on the threshold of having the capability to strike anywhere in the continental USA with a nuclear-tipped missile - a capacity that Trump and other USA officials have said they would not tolerate.
"And again, I say that with hope that maybe something can happen", said the U.S. President.
Since then, the path to the summit has been rocky, with Mr Trump at one point calling it off completely.
Despite the high stakes of a meeting meant to rid North Korea of its nuclear weapons, the talks have been portrayed by Mr Trump in recent days more as a get-to-know-you session. Moon later proposed a tri-lateral meeting to put a formal end to the Korean war after the summit.
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