Kim Jong Un arrives in Singapore ahead of historic Donald Trump meeting

Devin Lawrence
June 10, 2018

Kim is expected to arrive on Sunday afternoon, landing at Changi airport.

Trump and Kim are set to meet in two days at the Cabella Hotel to discuss denuclearisation of North Korea, in exchange for economic help.

Kim, in his first public comments since arriving, said Singapore's role would be recorded in history if the summit was a success.

Another possibility from the summit is a deal to end the Korean War, which North Korea has long demanded, presumably, in part, to get US troops off the Korean Peninsula and, eventually, pave the way for a North Korean-led unified Korea.

The 3,000-mile journey is the farthest taken by Kim since he took the helm as supreme leader of North Korea in 2011.

Kim Jong Un is greeted by Singapore's minister for foreign affairs, Vivian Balakrishnan, upon landing in the city-state on Sunday, June 10, 2018.

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The U.S. administration officials included on the trip are Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Chief of Staff John Kelly, National Security Adviser John Bolton, Deputy Chief of Staff Joe Hagin, Deputy National Security Adviser Mira Ricardel, National Security Council-Asia Director Matt Pottinger, senior adviser Steven Miller, press secretary Sarah Sanders and NSC communications official Sarah Tinsley.

Any nuclear deal will hinge on North Korea's willingness to allow unfettered outside inspections of the country's warheads and nuclear fuel, much of which is likely kept in a vast complex of underground facilities. Despite North Korea being one of the world's poorest countries, enormous resources were spent on the ballistic missile and nuclear programmes. It also successfully tested missiles that had enough range to reach the USA mainland.

"In the last few years, it's been building nuclear weapons".

In September, after North Korea conducted its sixth and largest nuclear test, Trump said in a tweet that Kim was " obviously a madman who doesn't mind starving or killing his people".

After a flurry of contacts between the two Koreas, South Korean officials suggested to Trump in March that Kim would be willing to meet face-to-face. They believe his latest engagement is aimed at getting the United States to ease crippling economic sanctions that have squeezed the impoverished country. For Trump, a successful summit will see him achieve badly needed kudos on the global stage ahead of congressional elections in November.

Trump is scheduled to arrive at Singapore's Paya Lebar Airbase at 8:35 p.m. on Sunday and go to the Shangri-La Hotel, according to the White House.

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