A HANDSHAKE MARKS HISTORIC U.S.-NORTH KOREA MOMENT
First-ever meeting between a sitting U.S. president and a North Korean leader takes place in Singapore
SINGAPORE—U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un kicked off a momentous summit Tuesday, with Trump declaring the two would have a “great discussion” and Kim saying they had overcome “obstacles” to get to this point.
Before a row of alternating U.S. and North Korean flags, the leaders shook hands warmly at a Singapore island resort, creating an indelible image of two unorthodox leaders as they opened a conversation that could determine historic peace or raise the spectre of a growing nuclear threat.
Trump and Kim planned to meet one on one for most of an hour — joined only by interpreters. Then aides to each were to join for more discussions and a working lunch. But even before they met, Trump announced plans to leave early, raising questions about whether his aspirations for an ambitious outcome had been scaled back.
The first meeting of a sitting U.S. president and a North Korean leader was the product of dizzying weeks of negotiations over logistics and policy.
In the run-up to the talks, Trump had hopefully predicted the two men might strike a nuclear deal or forge a formal end to the Korean War in the course of a single meeting or over several days. But on the eve of the summit, the White House unexpectedly announced Trump would depart Singapore by Tuesday evening, meaning his time with Kim would be fairly brief. And Secretary of State Mike Pompeo sought to keep expectations for the summit in check.
The summit could shape the fate of countless people, or it could amount to little more than a much-photographed handshake. Full story at thestar.com/world