United States President Donald Trump on Tuesday signed what he called a “pretty comprehensive” document alongside North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, capping off their historic summit in Singapore.
Trump and Kim sat beside one another at a large wooden table in front of a bank of U.S. and North Korean flags to endorse the document, the specific contents of which remain unknown.
“I think both sides are going to be impressed with the result,” Trump told reporters. “We’re going to take care of a very big and very dangerous problem for the world.”
Trump said more information would come out “in just a little while.”
He added he would “absolutely” invite Kim to the White House to continue their talks.
Kim called the document “historic” and said it would lead to a new era in the U.S.-North Korea relationship.
“We had a historic meeting and decided to leave the past behind, and we are about to sign a historic document,” he said through a translator. “The world will see a major change.”
Kim also thanked Trump for making “this meeting happen.”
The ceremony concluded a summit meeting that appeared impossible just one year ago, when both men’s threats against each other fueled an growing nuclear crisis.
Trump had mocked the North Korean leader as “Little Rocket Man” as the two exchanged barbs over their weapons programs. Kim responded by dismissing the president as a “mentally deranged dotard” who would “pay dearly” for his threats against Pyongyang.
Trump and Kim, however, appeared to have a friendly rapport during their day together at the Singapore island resort.
“The past worked as fetters on our limbs, and the old prejudices and practices worked as obstacles on our way forward. But we overcame all of them, and we are here today,” Kim said through a translator as the two met for the first time.
The pair shook hands and met in a one-on-one setting before conferring with aides. The president even showed the North Korean leader the inside of his limousine after their sessions were over.
“It’s going great. We had a really fantastic meeting. A lot of progress. Really, very positive, I think better than anybody could have expected, top of the line, really good,” Trump said after a working lunch with Kim.
Despite the optimistic rhetoric, the summit did not appear to produce an ironclad denuclearisation agreement or a peace treaty to end the Korean War — two possibilities Trump raised ahead of the talks.
Asked if Kim had agreed to denuclearise, Trump said, “we’re starting that process very quickly. Very, very quickly. Absolutely.”
U.S. and North Korean officials worked down to the wire to bridge the gap between what the two nations say denuclearisation means. The United States wants the complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation of North Korea, while Pyongyang wants disarmament across the Korean peninsula and other security assurances.
On the night before the meeting, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told reporters it would provide a “framework” for future negotiations. (The Hill)