Trump, Kim arrive for US-North Korea summit

Trump, Kim arrive for US-North Korea summit

According to the South Korean media outlet, ahead of a historic summit in Singapore North Korean leader has invited US President Donald Trump to Pyongyang for the second round of summit in July.

United States and North Korean officials are meeting Monday at the Ritz Carlton in this island city-state to negotiate before a sit-down meant to settle a standoff over Pyongyang's nuclear arsenal.

North Korean vice minister of foreign affairs Choi Sun-hee (third from left) arrives at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Singapore to continue talks with the American ambassador to the Philippines, Sung Kim.

The summit will be the first meeting between Trump and Kim and mark a turnaround of relations between the two leaders after a long-running exchange of furious threats and insults.

Trump and Kim are set to meet on Tuesday at the Capella Hotel on Sentosa for talks which could see North Korea dismantle its nuclear arsenal in return for economic help and security guarantees.

He was driven into the city centre in a stretch Mercedes-Benz limousine accompanied by a convoy of more than 20 vehicles, and later met Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, thanking him for hosting the event. But on the eve of the summit, the White House unexpectedly announced Trump would depart Singapore by Tuesday evening, meaning his time with Kim would be fairly brief.

It is the farthest Kim has travelled since inheriting power in 2011, and only his third known trip outside the country since then, with the use of a Chinese plane raising questions over the state of North Korea's ageing fleet of Soviet-built aircraft.

It is an extraordinary turnaround from the rhetoric of past year, when Trump threatened the North with "fire and fury" and Kim dubbed him a "mentally deranged U.S. dotard".

The summit has raised hopes of progress towards a peace treaty to formally end the Korean War, the last festering legacy of the Cold War, after hostilities only stopped with an armistice. China and South Korea would have to sign off on any legal treaty. After their initial greeting, the leaders will head into a room for the summit.

Trump advisers cast his actions as a show of strength before the Kim meeting.

Instead, North Korea's capital was like the calm in the center of a storm. Past nuclear deals have crumbled over North Korea's reluctance to open its doors to outsiders.

It's Kim's pursuit of nuclear weapons that gives his meeting with Trump such high stakes.

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