Singapore PM: Kim Jong Un a confident leader

Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong tells CNN's Christiane Amanpour that Kim Jong Un is a "confident young leader" who wants to take North Korea down a new path.

Posted: Jun 12, 2018 4:39 AM
Updated: Jun 12, 2018 4:51 AM

When President Donald Trump sits down with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un for the first time, they will be alone -- save for a pair of interpreters.

US and North Korean officials were still meeting on the eve of the summit in an effort to bridge the gap between the two countries on how to substantively achieve North Korean denuclearization. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the delegations were "rapidly" making progress, but it will come down to the meeting between the two leaders.

"Tomorrow we will get our clearest indication to date of whether Chairman Kim Jong Un truly shares this vision," Pompeo said.

The White House also announced Trump would be leaving Singapore earlier than previously expected and holding a media availability ahead of his departure.

A US official told CNN Trump's departure was moved up by more than 12 hours because Kim set his departure for shortly after the summit. Bloomberg first reported the reason behind the schedule change.

The official cautioned, however, that schedule could always change if meeting goes well and there is more to discuss. But official says meeting is intended to be "start of a relationship" and there will more to come between both sides if things go well.

Trump started tweeting early Tuesday morning local time, touting his diplomatic efforts and pushing back against critics of his efforts.

"Meetings between staffs and representatives are going well and quickly....but in the end, that doesn't matter. We will all know soon whether or not a real deal, unlike those of the past, can happen!" he tweeted.

"The fact that I am having a meeting is a major loss for the U.S., say the haters & losers. We have our hostages, testing, research and all missle launches have stoped, and these pundits, who have called me wrong from the beginning, have nothing else they can say! We will be fine!" Trump added.

After greeting each other before the cameras, Trump and Kim will kick off their historic summit at the Capella Hotel on Tuesday with a one-on-one meeting, the White House said on the eve of the summit. Only after their tête à tête will the President's top advisers -- Pompeo, chief of staff John Kelly and national security adviser John Bolton -- join him for an expanded bilateral meeting and working lunch.

The private first meeting will come amid concerns from US officials, allies and North Korea experts that Trump has not sufficiently prepared for his meeting with Kim and instead plans to open the dialogue in a more freewheeling fashion by following his gut instincts rather than a predetermined strategy. Pompeo, who has twice met Kim, insisted Monday that Trump is fully prepared for his meeting with the North Korean leader.

Trump and Kim will be making history here on Tuesday morning when they shake hands for the first time. Whether that historic first meeting between a sitting US president and North Korean leader proves substantive is another matter.

Substance

So far, the US has offered no indication that it has reached a substantive preliminary agreement with North Korea on how to achieve the "complete and verifiable and irreversible" denuclearization that Pompeo reconfirmed on Monday the US is seeking.

But Pompeo's comments sought to reaffirm the high benchmark the US is setting for Trump and Kim to reach an agreement. Pompeo also reiterated that the US 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.

Whether Trump and Kim will be able to bridge the gap on this key issue remains the key question ahead of the summit.

The US has made clear it will take a series of meetings to fully achieve that objective, but Trump will need to come away with something concrete to avoid criticism that he simply handed North Korea the legitimacy of a photo op with a sitting US president.

Beyond denuclearization, the two leaders will also approach the issue of officially ending the Korean War, normalizing relations between the two countries and a framework for reaching a denuclearization deal. The US may also look for North Korea to declare the existence and location of all the elements of its nuclear program.

The public will quickly find out how Trump viewed the summit. The White House said Trump will address reporters on Tuesday before flying back to the US.

Winging it

US officials, allies and North Korea experts have already fretted over Trump's indication that he will follow his gut instincts in approaching talks with Kim. The US President has spurned offers from Japan to more closely coordinate a unified position ahead of the summit and aides worry he has not internalized the information presented to him in briefings.

Now, Trump plans to hold his first meeting with Kim alone save for a pair of interpreters, heightening concerns he will stray from the approach US officials hope the President will follow.

Trump "is an incredibly instinctive, intuitive, off-the-cuff, winging-it negotiator," said Marty Latz, the author of the forthcoming book "The Real Trump Deal." "This is not someone who takes a lot of time to do strategy, he's not someone who's going to extensively read the research in negotiations. He just goes and he does it."

Trump has long groused about the cost of basing US troops in South Korea and has floated the possibility of withdrawing them. If that's the approach Trump is instinctively drawn to, US officials and experts worry Trump could make the concession in his first meeting with Kim.

Body language

The summit will already be a significant PR coup for North Korea, which has sought a face-to-face meeting with the sitting US president for decades.

But it will be up to Trump to decide how much to embrace the North Korean dictator.

Analysts will be closely scrutinizing the two men's body language -- physical contact, facial expressions and more -- as they meet for the first time in front of the Capella Hotel. Will they simply shake hands? Or will Kim go in for a hug as he did with South Korean President Moon Jae-in? And how will Trump react if he does?

While US officials are hopeful that Kim is prepared to take North Korea in a new direction by agreeing to denuclearization, Kim remains a ruthless dictator who has committed slews of human rights violations, ordered family members executed and spent millions of dollars advancing his nuclear and ballistic missile programs while his people face food shortages and poverty.

More meetings?

Trump has already floated the possibility of inviting Kim to Washington if the summit goes well.

But even before then, Trump and Kim could emerge from their meetings on Tuesday declaring a second day of meetings. US officials have already established a contingency plan for a two-day summit should the two leaders agree to an immediate second-round of talks.

For now, though, both Trump and Kim are scheduled to fly back to their homes after the summit on Tuesday.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 88721

Reported Deaths: 2015
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hennepin25628921
Ramsey10410318
Dakota7048125
Anoka5664132
Stearns371523
Washington352655
Scott238633
Olmsted226327
Nobles192616
Blue Earth15786
Wright15087
Carver13307
St. Louis131733
Rice12978
Mower12744
Clay123240
Sherburne107814
Kandiyohi9182
Winona84318
Lyon6384
Steele5162
Freeborn5113
Benton5003
Watonwan4984
Nicollet49616
Todd4732
Le Sueur4434
McLeod4402
Chisago4331
Waseca4258
Crow Wing41918
Otter Tail3794
Beltrami3714
Goodhue3249
Martin3049
Itasca27113
Polk2704
Isanti2440
Becker2422
Pine2390
Douglas2361
Carlton2351
Cottonwood2160
Pipestone2099
Morrison1951
Dodge1900
Chippewa1891
Unassigned18752
Sibley1763
Meeker1712
Wabasha1700
Brown1682
Murray1522
Yellow Medicine1482
Rock1460
Mille Lacs1413
Faribault1300
Redwood1290
Jackson1281
Renville1256
Cass1233
Swift1111
Roseau1100
Pennington1081
Houston1070
Fillmore1050
Kanabec1038
Koochiching1033
Lincoln1010
Stevens911
Pope860
Hubbard760
Aitkin701
Big Stone660
Wadena620
Grant574
Wilkin553
Lake530
Norman510
Marshall481
Mahnomen451
Lac qui Parle430
Red Lake370
Traverse290
Clearwater250
Lake of the Woods201
Kittson120
Cook60

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 79506

Reported Deaths: 1256
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Polk15227256
Johnson498527
Woodbury494461
Black Hawk433686
Linn3762106
Story327917
Scott276527
Dubuque276040
Dallas267538
Pottawattamie197637
Buena Vista194112
Marshall175934
Sioux13203
Wapello125757
Webster118914
Clinton106218
Muscatine106052
Plymouth103420
Crawford9944
Cerro Gordo99321
Warren9276
Jasper75632
Des Moines7377
Marion7074
Tama68731
Carroll6305
Henry6034
Lee5947
Wright5621
Dickinson4836
Bremer4637
Boone4627
Washington43011
Louisa42515
Mahaska33619
Franklin33517
Delaware3293
Hamilton3143
Floyd2963
Jackson2963
Winneshiek2935
Clay2883
Benton2811
Hardin2761
Winnebago26611
Butler2582
Clarke2553
Emmet25210
Jones2433
Poweshiek2438
Allamakee2425
Shelby2421
Lyon2413
Buchanan2351
Clayton2303
Cedar2191
Guthrie2175
Kossuth2170
Sac2090
Chickasaw2070
Grundy2012
Madison2012
Fayette1871
Cherokee1852
Howard1825
Iowa1821
Mitchell1810
Harrison1772
Hancock1722
Humboldt1713
Calhoun1692
Mills1651
Palo Alto1590
Pocahontas1512
Monroe14610
Page1410
Lucas1386
Jefferson1331
Monona1321
Cass1292
Osceola1250
Appanoose1203
Union1203
Taylor1191
Davis1134
Van Buren1091
Worth1020
Ida960
Keokuk901
Montgomery865
Greene840
Fremont820
Wayne812
Adair641
Audubon591
Decatur580
Ringgold412
Adams280
Unassigned230
Rochester
Clear
58° wxIcon
Hi: 71° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 58°
Mason City
Clear
57° wxIcon
Hi: 75° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 57°
Albert Lea
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 55°
Feels Like: 61°
Austin
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 61°
Charles City
Clear
59° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 59°
Warmer Weather Ahead
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Latest Video

Image

Saturday Weather

Image

What are the benefits of bringing football back to Minnesota this fall?

Image

Candlelight vigil for Prisoners of War

Image

MC Masters National Championship Regatta

Image

Early voting begins in Minnesota

Image

Dooley's Pub closes due to health hazards

Image

Area athletic directors prep to welcome back sports

Image

Early voting begins in Minnesota

Image

TikTok Ban to Begin This Weekend

Image

Sara's Evening Forecast - Friday

Community Events