Singapore: Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un hailed their historic summit on Tuesday as a breakthrough in relations between Cold War foes, but the agreement they produced contained few details about the key issue of Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons. The extraordinary and unprecedented encounter in Singapore saw the leader of the world’s most powerful democracy shake hands with the third generation scion of a dynastic dictatorship, standing as equals in front of their nations’ flags.
Kim agreed to the “complete denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula”, a stock phrase favoured by Pyongyang that stopped short of long-standing US demands for North Korea to give up its atomic arsenal in a “verifiable” and “irreversible” way. And in a blockbusting press conference after the summit, Trump said the US would halt military exercises with Seoul — something long sought by Pyongyang, which claims the drills are a rehearsal for invasion.
The Singapore summit was a potentially legacy-defining meeting for both men — comparable to president Richard Nixon’s 1972 visit to China, or Ronald Reagan’s 1986 summit with Mikhail Gorbachev in Reykjavik.