Kim, Trump in countdown to historic summit AFP

Hannah Rogers
June 15, 2018

President Donald Trump plans to depart early from his unprecedented summit with Kim Jong Un, the White House said Monday, declaring that nuclear talks with North Korea have moved "more quickly than expected". Pyongyang is demanding as yet unspecified security guarantees and the end of what it calls a "hostile policy" towards it, and has not made clear what concessions it is offering over the nuclear arsenal it calls its "treasured sword" to defend against a U.S. invasion.

In the lead up to the summit, North Korea rejected any unilateral nuclear disarmament, and KCNA's reference to denuclearisation of the peninsula has historically meant that Pyongyang wants the United States to remove its "nuclear umbrella" protecting South Korea and Japan.

Pompeo added that the USA was prepared to take action to provide North Korea with "sufficient certainty" that denuclearization "is not something that ends badly for them".

After the 2016 election, then-US President Barack Obama told Trump that North Korea was the biggest national security threat he faced, according to a US official.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in welcomed the summit but also cautioned that it will be the start of a "long process" that could take "one year, two years or even longer".

On Monday, crowds of journalists and curious locals gathered around the hotels where Trump and Kim are staying, while most other Singaporeans went about their daily routines - going to and from work, shopping and jogging past security checkpoints and police stationed with shotguns and rifles.

President Donald Trump and North Korea's Kim Jong Un spent Monday huddling with advisers in luxury Singapore hotels less than half a mile apart, readying for a nuclear summit that could define the fate of millions, and their own political futures. A senior White House official said Trump was "feeling good" and that the summit was open-ended. "We can go fast, we can go slowly", Trump said.

Mr Trump has also raised the possibility of further summits and an agreement ending the Korean War by replacing the armistice signed in 1953 with a peace treaty.

Some experts voiced concern that even if there were concessions from North Korea, the United States could be reluctant to return the favor immediately, given growing worries in Washington that Trump will go too easy on North Korea and eventually be taken advantage of.

Americans have long hoped for a peaceful denuclearization of North Korea
President and Moon held talks on the phone Monday night and are set to hold another conversation at 2020 KST, the Blue House confirmed.

Actually, says another group, there will indeed be disarmament, a peace treaty ending the Korean War and North Korea's emergence as a contributing member of the global community - but just not right now.

Earlier, the US President has expressed keenness about his summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and called it a "one-time opportunity".

It comes just over a month after the United States president pulled out of the landmark nuclear deal with Iran and other world powers that put strict restrictions on the Islamic republic's nuclear programme in exchange for sanctions relief.

"I don't think USA or global sanctions will be lifted coming out of this summit". Pompeo also reiterated that the USA will maintain its sanctions on North Korea until it fully dismantles its nuclear weapons program - seemingly writing off the prospect of the phased approach North Korea has sought. Create peace and great prosperity for his land.

Bandow noted that American companies could also turn to North Korea for low-priced manufacturing, which neighbors - like China and South Korea - already benefit from.

Although summit meetings between potential enemies are generally a positive indicator for war risks, they are largely symbolic and do not necessarily point to a shift in the conflicting motivations and strategic interests of the countries involved.

President Donald Trump blows out the candle on his birthday cake as he attends a lunch with Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the Istana in Singapore June 11, 2018.

Trump and Kim will be making history here on Tuesday morning when they shake hands for the first time.

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