With a ‘comprehensive’ document that commits to denuclearisation of the Korean Penninsula, North Korea’s Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump on Tuesday scripted history during the first-ever and much-awaited meeting held between the two countries. After months of negotiations, both the leaders met for a one-on-one interaction at the Capella Hotel, a secluded luxury resort on Singapore’s Sentosa Island. While Donald Trump said that the meeting with Kim Jong went “better than anyone could have expected,” Kim added that the world will see a “major change.”
Here is how the summit unfolded since this morning
1. Kim Jong-un arrived at the venue earlier than US President Donald Trump. According to North Korean media, the North Korean culture suggests the younger ones should arrive earlier as a mark of respect. US President Donald Trump arrived at the venue just 60 seconds before the summit was to begin.
2. With the world watching them keenly, both Trump and Kim looked serious as they got out of their limousines for the summit. The two leaders walked each other and shared a handshake for 13 seconds, with the flags of the two countries in the backdrop. Trump grasped Kim’s right arm as they shook, and then, later, took hold of Kim’s left arm as they turned to face the cameras and the world, both their expressions momentarily deadening before they turned to face each other again, and smiled.
3. “Nice to meet you Mr President,” were Kim’s first words, to which Trump responded, “It’s my honour and we will have a terrific relationship, I have no doubt.” Donald Trump then guided Kim Jong-un to the library where the one-on-one meeting was to take place.
4. After an interaction that lasted for over 40 minutes, Trump and Kim walking side-by-side through the collonaded hotel before re-entering the meeting room, where they were joined by their most senior officials.
5. “I think the entire world is watching this moment. Many people in the world will think of this as a scene from a fantasy…science fiction movie,” Kim Jong-un was heard telling Donald Trump. “We overcame all kinds of scepticism and speculations about this summit and I believe that this is good for the peace,” he said. “I believe this is a good prelude for peace.”
See in Pictures | Donald Trump, Kim Jong-Un’s historic Singapore handshake
6. US President Donald Trump also suggested that he had a fruitful interaction with the North Korean leader. Adding that meet was “very, very, very good,” Trump said both the countries have an “excellent relationship.” He also predicted that the Kim Jong and he “will solve a big problem, a big dilemma.” Trump was joined by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, National Security Adviser John Bolton, and John Kelly, White House Chief of Staff, for the expanded talks, while Kim’s team included former military intelligence chief Kim Yong Chol, foreign minister Ri Yong Ho and Ri Su Yong, vice chairman of the ruling Workers’ Party.
7. After the bilateral talks, the two leaders took a small stroll. Appearing in front of the media after the bilateral talks with North Korean leader, Donald Trump said that the meeting with Kim Jong-un was ‘better than anybody could have expected.’ As the two leaders met, Singapore navy vessels and air force Apache helicopters patrolled, while fighter jets and a Gulfstream 550 Airborne Early Warning aircraft circled.
8. Adding that the meeting was “terrific,” US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un signed a ‘comprehensive document’ committing to joint efforts to build a peaceful and stable regime.
The key points of the joint text include
* The United States and the DPRK commit to establish new U.S.-DPRK relations in accordance with the desire of the peoples of the two countries for peace and prosperity.
* The United States and the DPRK will join their efforts to build a lasting and stable peace regime on the Korean Peninsula.
* Reaffirming the April 27, 2018 Panmunjom Declaration, the DPRK commits to work towards complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
* The United States and the DPRK commit to recovering POW/MIA remains, including the immediate repatriation of those already identified.
9. Both the leaders shook hands and exchanged farewells after signing the document. Kim is likely to leave this afternoon while Trump will depart tonight. Both leaders had initially planned to leave the country on Wednesday.
10. In a meeting that looked impossible in the last few months, the two leaders have likely held discussions on North Korea’s international relations, denuclearisation as well as the international sanctions on the North. The meeting marks a dramatic shift in relations between Trump and Kim Jong, who traded insults and threats of war till early this year.
(With inputs from agencies)