Trump plans early departure with North Korea talks 'moving quickly'

Mast Irham  EPA via Shutterstock

Mast Irham EPA via Shutterstock

The relative speed with which the state media got the news of Kim's arrival in Singapore out to the North Korean public suggests a certain level of confidence that the meeting will go well - or at least well enough.

Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un were making last-minute preparations Monday on the eve of their historic summit, as officials scrambled to narrow yawning differences over Pyongyang's nuclear arsenal.

We also know that North Korea didn't fly to Singapore in his official plane.

His abrupt change of schedule will see him leave Singapore about 8pm on Tuesday (local time) after a full day of meetings with Kim, nearly 15 hours earlier than previously anticipated.

There were screams of "Kim!"

Later, Mr Kim left his luxurious hotel for a late-night city tour hours ahead of the summit.

Singapore is paying the bill for Kim and the North Korean delegation, Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan told the BBC on Monday.

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

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the preparatory talks between the two nations had moving quite rapidly.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Monday that the new, "unique" security assurances would show the isolated regime that giving up its weapons "is not something that ends badly for them".

Pompeo met Kim during two visits to North Korea in the lead-up to Tuesday's summit. But he says if diplomacy fails to move in the right direction, the sanctions "will increase".

During the meeting, the officials also celebrated Trump's birthday.

Armed police are guarding the St Regis Hotel on the island of Sentosa where he is staying.

"There are only two people that can make decisions of this magnitude".

He added that the expenditure forms part of the 20 million Singapore dollars ($15 million) that Singapore is spending on the summit in all. Others complained about the traffic jams in downtown Singapore.

"It is a cost we are willing to pay", Lee said.

"It is our contribution to an worldwide endeavour which is in our profound interest", he told reporters.

The historic first meeting between a sitting USA president and and North Korea's leader will take place Tuesday at 9 a.m. when Trump and Kin will meet alone with only translators in the room.

Taking to his Twitter handle, Trump said he was looking forward to meet Kim and added that the summit would be good for both the world peace and dictatorship.

His sister and close aide Kim Yo Jong is also in Singapore, and is believed to have travelled separately on the ageing Soviet-made Ilyushin-62 that is Kim's personal aircraft.

However, he played down the possibility of a quick breakthrough and said the summit should set the framework for "the hard work that will follow", insisting that North Korea had to move toward complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation.

Despite the summit now being back on, that deal and others by countries that have been part of worldwide nuclear deals - such as Ukraine after the fall of the Soviet Union, and Iran in 2015 - will also loom large over the discussions.

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