Wednesday, 21 November, 2018

Kim, Trump arrive in Singapore for landmark summit

Russell Knight | 11 June, 2018, 16:11

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.

Rodman announced on Twitter that he would be attending the summit in Singapore to give "whatever support is needed to my friends" referring to both Trump and Kim.

All his running bodyguards were decked up in black suits and blue ties.

Of course, inside the hotel and around Sentosa, the advanced party and specialist security teams from North Korea and the US will be sweeping the location ahead of the arrivals of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump.

The jet carrying Kim landed at the airport Sunday afternoon amid huge security precautions on this city-state island. While Kim and his delegation are now staying at the St. Regis Hotel amid heavy security.

North Korea has so far presented Kim's sudden diplomatic overtures to his neighbors and to the United States as a logical next step following what Kim has claimed is the completion of his plan to develop a credible nuclear deterrent to what Pyongyang has long claimed is a policy of hostility and "nuclear blackmail" by Washington.

During his preparation period, Trump continued on Monday to publicly brawl on Twitter with U.S. allies over trade.

He said the United States would be satisfied with nothing less than the complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula - with verification the key part of any deal.

'North Korea has its own royal lineage - the Kim family - and so it is natural that Kim Yo Jong traveled to Singapore separately from her brother'.

Observers in the region warn that ultimatums over denuclearization could make military confrontation between the US and North Korea even more likely, a situation Zhao Hai from China's Academy of Social Sciences described as a "down-spiral of security" that could turn into a nuclear "nightmare". "We're not going to go in and sign something on June 12, and we never were".

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It's a reflection of the intense global curiosity over Kim's sudden turn to diplomacy in recent months after a slew of North Korean nuclear and missile tests previous year raised serious fears of war.

Meanwhile, President Trump arrived at Paya Lebar Airbase in Singapore in the evening and was also received there by the country's foreign minister Vivian Balakrishnan.

But the two leaders also share some parallels.

"I think within the first minute, I'll know", Trump said, "just, my touch, my feel - That's what I do". In subsequent years, the US and South Korea signed a mutual defence treaty, but nothing for the North.

"The kind of counter-intuitive thing is, I think they are going to listen to each other", said Yonsei University professor John Delury.

Pompeo had earlier tweeted a photograph at breakfast with ambassador Kim, stating the U.S. position was unchanged: "We remain committed to the complete, verifiable, irreversible denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula". And even if North Korea agrees to dismantle all of its nuclear weapons, what's to say it won't make more now that it has the formula?

Trump pushed back on criticism that giving the North Korean leader a meeting with an American president is a major concession with nothing of value in return.

North Korea news agency KCNA commented on Tuesday's agenda, saying talks would focus on "the issue of building a permanent and durable peace-keeping mechanism on the Korean peninsula, the issue of realising the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula and other issues of mutual concern".

Mr Kim has also said he wants to focus on building the North Korean economy - and thus wants sanctions relief and global investment.

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