U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Tuesday finished a working lunch with talk of “signing” documents.
“We had a really fantastic meeting, a lot of progress,” Trump said. “I think better than anybody could have expected. Top of the line. Really good. We are going right now for a signing.”
The day began just after 9 a.m. Singapore time, when Trump shook hands with Kim at the Capella Hotel, on the resort islet of Sentosa.
The handshake marked the first time for a sitting U.S. president to meet with a North Korean leader.
Trump and Kim later walked along a colonnade, inside the hotel and up a flight of stairs. At 9:06 a.m., they entered the room where they held their one-on-one meeting.
“I feel really great. It’s gonna be a great discussion and I think tremendous success,” said Trump. “I think it’s gonna be really successful and I think we will have a terrific relationship I have no doubt.”
“It was not easy to come here,” said Kim. “We have the past which drags us back and such practices sometimes had blinded and deafened us. But we came to this place by overcoming all things.”
The two leaders then went into a meeting with only translators.
When the session ended, Trump said the talk with Kim was “very, very good,” according to AP. He also said he and Kim have an “excellent relationship.”
Delegates from both sides have since joined the talks, which are expected to continue through lunch.
“Working together we will get it taken care of,” Trump said as the meeting expanded. “We will solve it…and I look forward to working on it with you.
Thank you very much. Thank you very much, everybody.”
“There will be challenges ahead but we will work with Trump,” Kim said. “We overcame all kinds of skepticism and speculations about this summit, and I believe that this is good for peace.”
The delegations at just past 11:30 moved to another room in the hotel for a working lunch.The summit’s outcome could prove pivotal in determining the course of denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
The key issue is North Korea’s nuclear weapons program, which the U.S. wants dismantled in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner.
Pyongyang, however, is resistant to giving up an arsenal it has spent decades developing. Kim is likely to demand security guarantees for his regime as well as generous economic assistance.
Trump is to hold a press conference in the afternoon.