Published: Sun, June 10, 2018
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Kim arrives in Singapore for summit with Trump

Kim arrives in Singapore for summit with Trump

A plane believed to be carrying North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un approaches to land in Singapore June 10, 2018.

Refrigerator trucks will be waiting at Changi Airport on Sunday to receive the cargo flight, Singapore's Straits Times newspaper reported, saying the plane is believed to be carrying food items as well as several luxury cars to escort the North Korean leader.

Police warned of traffic congestion around the airport and along roads near the hotel, citing the North Korea-U.S. summit as a reason for the delays.

When Trump and Kim meet on the resort island of Sentosa on Tuesday they will be making history even before they start.

The two countries were on the brink of war a year ago, with their leaders trading insults and threats, until Kim made a dramatic offer in March to meet Trump and discuss nuclear disarmament, which the American president quickly accepted.

Mr Kim has only publicly left his country three times since taking power after his despot father's death in late 2011 - twice traveling to China and once across his shared border with the South to the southern part of the Demilitarised Zone in recent summits with the leaders of China and South Korea respectively.

North Korea announced it had achieved that capability late past year.

On Thursday, Trump dangled the prospect of normalized relations with the United States, and even a White House visit for Kim if he ditched his nuclear arsenal.

For Trump, a successful summit will see him achieve badly needed recognition on the global stage ahead of congressional elections in November.

China and South Korea would have to sign off on any legal treaty. Despite North Korea being one of the world's poorest countries, enormous resources were spent on the ballistic missile and nuclear programs.

Past nuclear deals have crumbled over North Korea's reluctance to open its doors to outsiders.

Kim called Trump "a mentally deranged USA dotard".

The summit would go in the North Korean capital of Pyongyang, Axios reports based on two sources familiar with preparations for the Singapore summit.

After a flurry of contacts between the two Koreas, South Korean officials suggested to Trump in March that Kim would be willing to meet face-to-face.

Kim said he would instead put all efforts into jumpstarting economic growth for his country of more than 25 million people.

But many, if not all analysts, say that this is highly unlikely, given how hard it has been for Mr Kim to build his programme and that the weapons are seen as the only protection he has.

The tests came amid a campaign of "maximum pressure", led by the United States, that tightened economic sanctions against North Korea and raised the possibility of military action.

Just meeting with Mr Trump will also give Mr Kim recognition as the leader of a "normal" country and as an equal of the U.S. leader.

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