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US and North Korea leaders Trump and Kim meet for first time and sign historic agreement

posted onJune 12, 2018
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US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un met Tuesday morning in Singapore for a historic summit. It is the first time a serving American president has ever met a North Korean leader. 

"Nice to meet you Mr President," were the words spoken by Kim upon meeting Trump. 

The two parties signed an agreement in front of the world's press pledging to work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.

“President Trump committed to provide security guarantees to the DPRK and Chairman Kim Jong Un reaffirmed his firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula,” said the statement. 

PRK is the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the formal name of North Korea. 

 

"We had a terrific day and we learned a lot about each other and about our countries," Trump told the assembled media at the summit standing shoulder-to-shoulder with Kim."I learned he's a very talented man. I also learned he loves his country very much." 

For his part, the North Korean leader said, "It was not easy to get here. The past worked as fetters on our limbs, and the old prejudices and practices worked as obstacles on our way forward. But we overcame all of them, and we are here today," according to a translation provided by the White House. Trump responded: "That's true."

Critics say the document does not contain any significant new commitments and made no mention of  finally signing a peace treaty. The U.S. and North Korea were on opposite sides in the 1950-53 Korean War and are technically still at war, as the conflict ended with an armistice and not a peace treaty. But the joint statement did say the two sides had agreed to recovering the remains of prisoners of war and of those missing in action and repatriating them. 

The bill for hosting summit will come up to about $20 million, according to Sinpapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loon. The $20 million bill for the summit is a fraction of the $150 million spent each year to host past editions of the Formula One race. 

How world leaders reacted to the summit

South Korean President Moon Jae-in,  praised the "historic" summit and called it a "great victory achieved by both the United States and the two Koreas." 

China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi  said that Beijing"welcomes and supports the history-making talks between DPRK and US leaders" and "will continue to play a unique and important role to resolve the peninsula issue,"People's Daily reported.

Russia's deputy foreign minister, Sergei Ryabkov said the summit was an "important step forward," but that "the devil is in the detail." 

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe welcomed the agreement as a "first step" towards denuclearisation but said more needed to be done. 


With reporting by Reuters