Inside Singapore's $20m Trump-Kim summit showcase

Share

In a video footage, Trump was seen leaving the Paya Lebar Air Base tarmac in the Presidential Beast, a vehicle that is flown around the globe for a US President's visits. After greeting each other, the two leaders planned to sit for a one on one meeting that a US official said could last up to two hours, with only translators joining them.

Now, both sides appear prepared to let Tuesday's historic face-to-face between the sitting leaders of the USA and North Korea function as more of an ice-breaker (and photo op) than a high-stakes diplomatic showdown.

Trump and Kim arrived in Singapore hours apart Sunday.

Kim smiled as he took a selfie with Singapore's Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan at the scenic waterfront Gardens by the Bay.

He had his first formal meeting of the summit with the prime minister of Singapore, Lee Hsien Loong.

Kim had arrived hours earlier in a plane loaned by China, which for decades has been North Korea's only major ally.

The country's youth unemployment rate stood at 10.7 percent in April and job-seeker Kim Tae-young - who has a bachelor's degree in engineering and new materials - said: "Frankly speaking, I have no particular feelings about the summit, but I just hope it would help ease uncertainties". Complete, verifiable, irreversible denuclearization, he told reporters, "is the only outcome that the United States will accept". But U.S. officials have since avoided such lofty declarations. "They both get what they want".

More news: Arjun Kapoor's Sweet Message for Jhanvi Will Bring Tears to Your Eyes!
More news: Trump Aide Larry Kudlow Calls Justin Trudeau Trade Comments A 'Betrayal'
More news: Fresh legal attack on health law comes with political risks

Pompeo also said that Trump had called Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and South Korean president Moon Jae-in.

"Sending Kim Yong-chol to NY may serve to cut out a layer of middlemen - to get urgent clarifications and/or send a relatively unfiltered message to Washington that they are going to have to modify their approach if this is going to happen", Mr Pollack said.

He has also dangled the prospect of Kim visiting Washington if the meeting goes well. As it happens, the North Korean and the American share a tendency to act unpredictably on the world stage. "We are prepared to take what will be security assurances that are different, unique, than America's been willing to provide previously".

On the day before the meeting, weeks of preparation appeared to pick up the pace, with US and North Korean officials meeting throughout Monday at a Singapore hotel. The US president has also raised the possibility of further summits and an agreement ending the Korean War by replacing the armistice signed in 1953 with a peace treaty.

The two leaders have had an extraordinary up-and-down relationship over the past 18 months. He has been to Beijing twice and has briefly crossed the frontier at the Demilitarized Zone with South Korea to meet its president.

Pyongyang has taken some steps to show sincerity, returning US detainees and blowing up its nuclear test site.

"If diplomacy doesn't move in the right direction, sanctions will increase", Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says. The leaders are spending the night at hotels about a half-mile apart in the upscale shopping area in Tanglin.

Share