North Korea state media says Syria’s Assad wants to meet Kim
- Celia Watts
Mr Trump said the June 12 meeting would be "a beginning". He also said it was likely that more than one meeting would be necessary.
"I think it's probably going to be a very successful process", he said.
"We will see what happens. I said 'What's the point goal of that?' but it could be a positive meeting".
The North Korean delegation met with Trump to hand a letter from North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to the president. A team of negotiators were holding talks along the Korean Demilitarized Zone to draft some type of document that both leaders could agree to, and a logistics team was in Singapore arranging final details for the talks.
But it is the meeting in Singapore on 12 June with President Trump that is the most high-profile and which has the most at stake, with the USA demanding the full denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula and the North seeking to ease crippling sanctions.
North Korea denied any involvement in either incident.
Ahead of the talks, the South Korean side said it planned to use the meeting to reduce tensions across the heavily-armed border and talks to engage with the Red Cross to resume family reunions for people separated by the 1950-53 Korean War.
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The high-level meeting between the Koreas followed talks in NY between U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and senior North Korean envoy Kim Yong Chol on a possible summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
Since then, preparations for the meeting kicked into high gear, with delegations from Washington and Pyongyang holding meetings in the demilitarized zone in North Korea and in NY.
"Our two countries face a pivotal moment in our relationship, and it would be nothing short of tragic to let this opportunity go to waste", Pompeo said in NY after meeting with Kim.
The White House released photos of its delivery, and this isn't just any ordinary letter.
"We will push forward to test the proposition that we can achieve that outcome", he said.
It would be the first time the North Korean leader would be meeting the leader of a foreign country in a summit in Pyongyang.
The two nations have maintained warm ties for decades as they were both put under global sanctions; North Korea over its nuclear weapons and Syria over its civil war. However, Pyongyang wants security guarantees and sees the nuclear program as key to its survival.
North Korea's conciliatory response to that letter appears to have put the summit back on track.