Monday, 10 December, 2018

Trump and Kim make history with a handshake

These Australians have a special interest in the Singapore summit READ MOREWhy the Trump Kim summit matters to these Australians
Orlando Vargas | 12 June, 2018, 09:29

Trump mostly remained inside his Shangri-la hotel on the day before the summit, emerging only to meet with his Singaporean counterpart at the presidential palace.

U.S. President Donald Trump (right) and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un shake hands at the Capella Hotel in Singapore on Tuesday.

Trump and Kim chatted amiably out of earshot as they walked into the building for the private meeting that preceded a full bilateral conference that included aides and advisers. Moments after shaking Kim's hand, Trump said "we will have a terrific relationship". Two of America's close partners - Japan and South Korea - have assured the U.S. of help in the economic reconstruction of North Korea if everything goes well in Singapore. For North Korea, who has long sought legitimacy on the global stage, the meeting was a historic opportunity to show that it carries weight. USA officials have said a best case scenario would be that it serves as a launching pad for negotiations that would provide Kim with physical security and his closed off nation with economic assurances in exchange for irreversibly dismantling his country's nuclear capabilities.

"Meetings between staffs and representatives are going well and quickly....but in the end, that doesn't matter".

The summit is being held at a hotel on Sentosa, a popular tourist island a few hundred metres off the Singapore mainland and started at 1pm.

"We sat down for lunch", Rodman said of a face-to-face meeting with Kim five years ago.

At the conclusion of the summit, President Trump will participate in a media availability before departing for the United States at around 8 pm Singapore time. The "madman" comment also came after a historic televised statement from Kim, in which the North Korean leader called Trump a "mentally deranged US dotard".

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Still, they said, the initial Trump-Kim summit could at least yield an agreement to keep negotiating.

Trump has said he'll know within minutes whether a deal can be made. The meeting was initially meant to rid North Korea of its nuclear weapons, but the talks have been portrayed by Trump in recent days more as a get-to-know-you session.

"These discussions that will take place tomorrow between Chairman Kim and President Trump will set the framework for the hard work that will follow".

The two leaders began the meeting for 9 a.m. Tuesday, Singapore time - prime time Monday back in the USA.

The White House said later that discussions with North Korea had moved "more quickly than expected" and Trump would leave Singapore on Tuesday night after the summit, rather than Wednesday, as scheduled earlier. Past nuclear deals have crumbled over North Korea's reluctance to open its doors to outsiders.

That is in direct contradiction to a 2014 tweet by Trump, who said Rodman was "delusional" for wanting him to visit North Korea.

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