Published: Tue, June 12, 2018
Finance | By Loren Pratt

Negotiators scramble to put something together for Trump and Kim

Negotiators scramble to put something together for Trump and Kim

Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un are scheduled to meet at 9 a.m. local time (1 a.m. GMT), simultaneously entering the negotiation room via different doors. But no one can credibly suggest that a durable or verifiable denuclearization of the Korean peninsula can be achieved when North Korea remains a completely closed and totalitarian state. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the delegations were "rapidly" making progress, but it will come down to the meeting between the two leaders.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Sung Kim, the U.S. ambassador to the Philippines who has taken the lead on policy negotiations with the North, will hold a "working group" with a North Korean delegation to discuss final preparations for the meeting.

Kim is expected to stay at the St Regis hotel and Trump at the Shangri-La, both in the Tanglin area in downtown Singapore.

Watch our comprehensive coverage of the Trump-Kim summit live on YouTube from 7am on Tuesday (Jun 12).

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The stakes are high - the US seeks nothing less than the complete and verifiable denuclearization of the Korean peninsula, and Kim wants to see the sanctions on the North eased. It will certainly be an exciting day and I know that Kim Jong-un will work very hard to do something that has rarely been done before ...

Still, the sense of anticipation was great in Singapore, with people lining spotless streets holding cellphones high as Trump headed to meet Lee.

The North Korean leader reportedly arrived at Changi Airport in Singapore Sunday afternoon, where he was met by the Minister for Foreign Affairs Vivian Balakrishnan.

El líder norcoreano Kim Jong-un y el presidente de EEUU Donald Trump
AFP 2018 Saul Loeb World Follows Every Step of Historic Trump Kim Summit

Both leaders would offer "clear, specific, unequivocal statements" outlining a dismantlement of North Korean weapons, an inventory and removal of all nuclear fuel and an opening up to United Nations nuclear inspectors.

However, Trump and his aides insist that a USA -led "maximum pressure" campaign of the toughest-ever economic sanctions, diplomatic action and military threats is what has drawn Kim to the negotiating table.

North Korea, though, has shown little appetite for surrendering nuclear weapons it considers vital to the survival of Kim's dynastic rule.

The fighting ended on 27 July, 1953, but the war technically continues today because instead of a difficult-to-negotiate peace treaty, military officers for the US -led United Nations, North Korea and China signed an armistice that halted the fighting.

It's unclear what Trump and Kim might decide Tuesday.

Trump initially touted the potential for a grand bargain with North Korea to rid itself of a nuclear missile program that has advanced rapidly to threaten the United States.

He accompanied the young leader at all four of his recent summits, twice with South Korean President Moon Jae-in and twice with Chinese President Xi Jinping.


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