Singapore, June 11 (IANS) North Korean state media announced on Monday that its leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump will discuss issues such as denuclearisation during their summit on Tuesday here, as part of a new era in relations between the two countries.
According to the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), the two leaders will talk in Singapore about “establishing new North Korea-US relations, building a permanent and durable peace-keeping mechanism on the Korean Peninsula, realising the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula and other issues of mutual concern, as required by this new era”, reports Efe news.
The summit will be the first between the two countries and will be held “under the watchful eye and great expectations of the whole world”, KCNA added.
Leading North Korean newspaper, Rodong Sinmun, reported Kim’s arrival in Singapore on Sunday on the front page with several photos of him at the Changi airport with an Air China plane and the welcome ceremony by Singaporean Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan.
This is Kim’s first-known trip outside Northeast Asia since taking power in 2011.
The second page of the newspaper focuses on the official meeting that Kim held with Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the presidential palace Istana later on Sunday.
Another editorial includes details of the event, saying that North Korea will “seek normalisation through dialogue” with a country, (whose name is unspecified), provided that that nation “respects the autonomy” of North Korea.
North Korean state television KCTV also reported Kim’s trip in its morning news briefing with images of his arrival and his meeting with the Singaporean Prime Minister.
Except for a meeting between Lee and Trump scheduled for Monday, the US President and the North Korean leader have almost the entire day free before the summit starts on Tuesday at 9 a.m. at the exclusive Capella Hotel in Sentosa Island.
Trump arrived in Singapore also on Sunday, shortly after attending the G7 Summit in Canada.
Meanwhile on Monday, senior North Korean and US diplomats held last-minute talks in Singapore to come up with a draft agreement to be presented to the leaders of the two countries during their summit, reports Yonhap News Agency.
Ambassador Sung Kim, the US State Department’s top Korea expert, met Choe Son-hui, the North’s Vice Foreign Minister, at the Ritz Carlton hotel.
Choe and Kim have already held several rounds of discussions at Panmunjom on the inter-Korean border that were reportedly focused on summit agenda items, including denuclearisation and security assurance measures.