Published: Thu, June 14, 2018
Global | By Shelia Dennis

Business as usual in North Korea as public unaware of summit

Business as usual in North Korea as public unaware of summit

Throughout the convoluted process that led to the unprecedented summit between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, President Moon Jae-in of South Korea has played the role of mediator.

Choi's fiery outburst at Trump's national security adviser, John Bolton, and Vice President Mike Pence a fortnight ago was blamed for Trump suddenly, and briefly, cancelling the summit.

Before setting off, Mr Trump described the summit as a "one-time shot" at peace and said the two were in "unknown territory in the truest sense".

In October, Trump praised the US relationship with Singapore and called Loong a "wonderful and loyal partner".

The meeting is scheduled to take place at the Capella Hotel on Singapore's Sentosa Island on Tuesday.

Dare I say it, conventional politics would not have got us to the point where we are now. "After that, headlines will be all about Kim and Xi Jinping", said Jeon Kyong-man, an economist at the Institute for Korean Integration of Society, with reference to the Chinese president. There was no need to.

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In another tweet, Pompeo said the United States remains "committed to the complete, verifiable, irreversible denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula". Would conventional politics have even taken us this far? The only sane reaction is to hope that they do both get along.

"[President Trump] is not going to permit any show of weakness on the trip to negotiate with North Korea", Kudlow said on CNN's State of the Union. It heralded the summit as part of a "changed era". They arrived at the Istana before noon.

United States of America President Donald Trump arrived at the Singapore Paya Lebar Air Base on Sunday evening (June 10) and headed straight to Shangri-La hotel where he turned in for the night.

But many say Kim's government is unlikely to give up weapons that help guarantee its survival.

The invitation to Pyongyang contained in the letter, which was handed by Kim Jong-un's top aide Kim Yong Chol to the US President Trump on June 1, the Chosun Ilbo newspaper reported, citing its sources privy to the matter.

Aware that the eyes of the world were on a moment many people never expected to see, Kim said many of those watching would think it was a scene from a "science fiction movie".

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"If the summit becomes a success, the Singaporean efforts will go down in history", Kim said.

Mr Trump and Mr Kim have had an extraordinary up-and-down relationship over the past 18 months, trading insults and threatening war before abruptly changing tack and moving towards a face-to-face meeting. On the day before the meeting, weeks of preparation appeared to pick up in pace, with US and North Korean officials meeting throughout Monday at a Singapore hotel.

The US president vowed to unleash "fire and fury" if Pyongyang kept threatening the US. "North Korea-South Korea were to sign a declaration ending the war, it can not technically replace the armistice", the Global Times argued, since the 1953 armistice was also signed by the Chinese armed forces who participated in the Korean War.

North and South Korea remain technically at war after the 1950-53 conflict ended in an armistice that Seoul's then leader refused to sign and divided the peninsula along the Demilitarized Zone.

Media captionTrump-Kim summit: Can you achieve peace on a plate?

It was also Chung and Suh who relayed to Trump Kim's wishes to meet and to discuss denuclearization.

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