WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un shook each other’s hands when they met June 12, Tuesday morning local time.
- The meeting place of the two unpredictable leaders is a hotel in Singapore’s tourist-island, Sentosa.
- Trump was joined by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, national security adviser John Bolton, chief of staff John Kelly and national security adviser John Bolton and the US Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim, a former U.S. Special Representative for North Korea Policy.
Singapore witnessed a historic moment when Trump and Kim agreed to hold their meeting in the Southeast Asian country. It is the first meeting ever for a US president and a North Korean leader.
Trump is putting his extraordinary gamble with North Korea to the test, sitting for unprecedented talks with Kim in what he hopes will amount to a historic breakthrough, CNN reported.
Whether North Korea agreed to denuclearization during the summit, the outcome will not be known immediately.
Trump left his hotel at just past 8 a.m. (local time) and reached the meeting location about 10 minutes later. The North Korean leader arrived shortly afterward.
The two leaders were in separate rooms before they met face-to-face at 9 a.m. They shook hands and greeted each other in front of a row of US and North Korean flags
As usual, Trump tweeted from his hotel room in the pre-dawn hours on Tuesday.
“Meetings between staffs and representatives are going well and quickly….but in the end, that doesn’t matter. We will all know soon whether or not a real deal, unlike those of the past, can happen!” he tweeted.
The two leaders were guided inside a room for one-on-one talks. They were only joined by translators, “a break from the standard practice of having at least one aide present for high-stakes huddles.”
Advisers from both countries will join in afterward for a larger bilateral session and a working lunch. According to CNN, the US and North Korean officials were discussing final-hour negotiations in a Ritz Carlton hotel, also in Singapore, to narrow gaps on key aspects of the meeting.
The big agenda is North Korea’s commitment to denuclearization and the security guarantees the United States can offer in return.
There will be a US-North Korea “statement of understanding” that would be released after the meeting, a US official said.
“I just think it’s going to work out very nicely,” Trump said positively during Monday’s lunch with Singapore’s prime minister.