North Korea’s Kim Jong Un arrives in Singapore for historic Trump summit

Muriel Colon
June 10, 2018

A limousine, front, with a North Korean flag believed to be carrying leader Kim Jong Un travels past Singapore's Orchard Road on its way to the St Regis Hotel as he arrives in Singapore on Sunday, June 10, 2018.

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

In addition to protection, the North Korean delegation may fine-tune its security detail to project a particular image for Kim Jong Un, said Ahn Chan-il, a defector and current president of the World Institute for North Korea Studies.

The Singapore Police Force reminded "all foreigners visiting Singapore to abide by our laws", adding, "Members of the media who commit any offense in Singapore will not be accredited and thus will not be able to cover the Summit between the USA and North Korea".

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will be meeting Kim later on Sunday, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

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. The meeting was initially meant to rid North Korea of its nuclear weapons, but the talks have been portrayed by Trump in recent days more as a get-to-know-you session.


The North Korean autocrat's every move will be followed by 3,000 journalists who have converged on Singapore, and by gawkers around the world, up until he shakes hands with Trump on Tuesday.

He also made two secret trips to China since March to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping, and hosted U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo twice in Pyongyang.

The two countries were on the brink of war past year, with their leaders trading insults and threats, until Kim made a dramatic offer in March to meet Trump and discuss nuclear disarmament, which the American president quickly accepted. Many remain sceptical Kim will ever completely abandon his nuclear programmes.

Kim's journey from worldwide pariah to being regarded as a responsible head of state has taken just a few months. For Trump, a successful summit will see him achieve badly needed kudos on the worldwide stage ahead of congressional elections in November.

The two leaders will meet at 9 a.m. on Tuesday at the Capella on Sentosa island, a refurbished British Army artillery mess that is now one of Singapore's most expensive luxury hotels. Trump was scheduled to arrive later Sunday.

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