Singapore-North Korea trade can grow if sanctions lifted: PM Lee

14 June 2018, 07:26 | Isaac Mcdaniel

Kim arrived with his notorious running security detail Credit TYRONE SIU REUTERS

Kim arrived with his notorious running security detail

Trump's arrival in Singapore came off the back of a tense G7, where he dug his heels in about unfair trade, particularly with Canada.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un asked U.S. President Donald Trump to visit Pyongyang for their second summit in July in his letter to Trump, a South Korean newspaper reported Monday, citing a source in Singapore.

But critics charge that the meeting risks being largely a triumph of style over substance.

Despite that the North sent three separate flights to Singapore on Sunday in an apparent effort to confuse onlookers. Trump is also scheduled to meet his Singaporean counterpart Lee Hsien Loong on Monday, June 11.

According to accounts of the G-7 meeting, officials from other members of the bloc confronted Trump with a torrent of statistics about the importance of the USA -authored global order and the merits of free trade. While Kim and his delegation are now staying at the St. Regis Hotel amid heavy security.

Discussions would focus on "the issue of building a permanent and durable peace-keeping mechanism on the Korean peninsula, the issue of realising the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula and other issues of mutual concern", KCNA said.

Former US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage expected little progress on the key issue of defining denuclearization.

The top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee says the North Korean leader has already achieved some success just by bringing the American president to the table. "They both get what they want".

The two leaders have had an extraordinary up-and-down relationship over the past 18 months.

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A report by the Korea Central News Agency said the summit would have "wide-ranging and profound talks" and noted that it is being held "under the great attention and expectation of the whole world".

But even the merit of the event itself - long sought by the North, and which Trump apparently impulsively agreed to in March, reportedly without consulting his advisers - has been called into question.

DPRK stands for the North's formal name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

The two countries have been at loggerheads for decades.

Since Kim chose to reach out through diplomatic means to the South in January of this year, he has signaled that he is prepared to accept certain aspects of the US-South Korea military alliance. While hostilities ended with an armistice in 1953, no peace treaty has been signed yet.

Mr Trump has said he will know within a minute if the North Korean leader is serious. "If diplomacy does not move in the right direction.those measures will increase". "We will not be surprised by any scenario", said the official.

"We have to get denuclearization".

He said more than one meeting with North Korea will be necessary to complete a meaningful deal, but the summit is a start.



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