June 16, 2018 - No. 23
Report on the
Summit and Responses
Remarks to Press
• Responses to Summit
• Halting of
U.S.-Led War Games
DPRK-U.S. Summit in Singapore
Report on the Summit
A historic breakthrough in U.S.-DPRK relations was
achieved on June 12 when U.S. President Donald Trump and Chairman
of the State Affairs Commission of the Democratic People's Republic of
Korea (DPRK) Kim Jong Un held a summit
in Singapore, at the Capella Hotel on Sentosa Island. At least 5,000
journalists were present and large numbers of people came to witness
this long-awaited moment in history. The following report is primarily
based on accounts published by the Korean Central News Agency
(KCNA) and supplemented by reports from the Hankyoreh and other sources.
The first meeting between President Trump and Chairman
began with an extended handshake and a brief exchange before they
walked to the meeting room and sat down in front of journalists,
where President Trump was the first to speak. "I feel really
great. We're going to have a great discussion and will be
tremendously successful," Trump said. "And it's my honour. And we
will have a terrific relationship, I have no doubt." Chairman Kim
responded, "We have a past that
shackles us, and mistaken preconceptions and practices have
sometimes covered our eyes and ears. Yet we have overcome all of
that to arrive here." The two leaders then proceeded to a
one-on-one meeting, accompanied by interpreters only.
Chairman Kim greets U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton and
other members of the U.S. delegation to the Summit.
Following the one-on-one meeting was an expanded Summit
officials and aides from both sides in attendance. Present at the
Summit from the DPRK side were Kim Yong Chol and Ri Su Yong,
vice-chairmen of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of
Korea, and Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho. Present from the U.S.
side were Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, U.S. National Security
Advisor John Bolton and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly. At
the start of this session, President Trump remarked, "Working
together, we will get it taken care of," forecasting that he and
Kim will solve "a big problem and a big dilemma." Kim expressed
the aim to work together with President Trump "to resolve the
challenges ahead" and to overcome the skepticism and speculations
about their summit.
Chairman Kim expressed his pleasure with meeting
President Trump face-to-face and praised the U.S. side's willingness
and enthusiasm to resolve matters in a realistic way through dialogue
and negotiations, away from the past filled with hostility.
President Trump further remarked that the Summit would
to an improvement in DPRK-U.S. relations. He expressed his
appreciation that despite the extreme danger of armed conflict in
the region only a few months ago, an atmosphere of peace and
stability had been created on the Korean Peninsula and in the
region thanks to the proactive measures taken by Chairman Kim
from the outset of this year.
Noting that many problems have occurred due to
distrust and hostility between the two countries, Chairman Kim
said that to achieve the peace and stability of the Korean Peninsula
and realize its denuclearization, the two countries should build
mutual understanding and commit to refraining from antagonizing
each other and taking legal and institutional steps to guarantee
this is the case.
He also underlined the need for the DPRK and the U.S.
actively take practical measures to carry out the issues
discussed at the talks and the joint statement at an early
Chairman Kim immediately agreed with President Trump's
proposal for the recovery of the remains of U.S. soldiers who
died in the Korean War and repatriating those already identified,
giving the instruction to the DPRK side that it should be carried
out as soon as possible. Noting that the building of a lasting
peace-keeping mechanism on the Korean Peninsula is of great
significance to ensure peace and security in the region and the
rest of the world, he said that it is urgent for both sides to
take a bold decision to halt the hostile military actions against
Discussion between the two leaders affirmed the shared
recognition of the importance of abiding by the principle of
step-by-step and simultaneous action in achieving peace,
stability and denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. President
Trump expressed his intention to halt the U.S.-south Korea joint
military exercises, acknowledging the provocative nature of these
activities, over a period of good-will dialogue between the DPRK
and the U.S. Also on the table are further security guarantees to the
DPRK and the lifting of sanctions against it along with further
improving the U.S.-DPRK relationship through dialogue and negotiation.
Chairman Kim stated that if the U.S. side takes
genuine measures to build trust to improve the DPRK-U.S.
relationship, the DPRK can also continue to take additional goodwill
measures commensurate with them.
invited President Trump to visit Pyongyang at a convenient time
and President Trump similarly invited Chairman Kim to visit the
U.S; they accepted each other's invitation on the basis
that it would serve as another important occasion for improved
The expanded session gave way to a luncheon in honour
occasion of the Summit, where views were exchanged on developing
communication, contact and visits between both sides to cement
the achievements made at the Summit and to develop DPRK-U.S.
The luncheon was followed by the signing of a joint
by President Trump and Chairman Kim.
Chairman Kim and President Trump sign the four-point declaration to
conclude the Summit.
President Trump's Remarks to Press
Following the conclusion of the Summit, President Trump
to the press, where he expressed thanks to Prime Minister Lee
Hsien Loong of host country Singapore; President Moon Jae-in of
the Republic of Korea (ROK); Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan;
and President Xi Jingping of China, for their contribution to the
Summit and its aim of peace. He continued:
"Most importantly, I want to thank Chairman Kim for
the first bold step toward a bright new future for his people.
Our unprecedented meeting, the first between an American
president and leader of north Korea, proves that real change is
indeed possible. My meeting with Chairman Kim was honest, direct,
and productive. We got to know each other well in a very confined
period of time. [...]
"We're prepared to start a new history and we're ready
write a new chapter between our nations. Nearly 70 years ago,
think of that, 70 years ago, an extremely bloody conflict ravaged
the Korean Peninsula. Countless people died in the conflict.
Including tens of thousands of brave Americans. Yet while the
armistice was agreed the war never ended to this day.
"Now we can have hope it will soon end and it soon
past does not have to define the future. Yesterday's conflict
does not have to be tomorrow's war. And as history has proven
over and over again, adversaries can become friends. [...]
"There's no limit to what north Korea can achieve when
gives up its nuclear weapons and embraces commerce and engagement
with the rest of the world. It really wants to engage.
"Chairman Kim has an opportunity like no other: to be
remembered as the leader who ushered in a glorious new era of
security and prosperity for his people. Chairman Kim and I just
signed a joint statement in which he reaffirmed his unwavering
commitment to complete denuclearization of the Korean
Trump also stated, "Chairman Kim says north Korea
also destroying a major missile engine testing site. That's not
in your signed document. We agreed to that after the agreement
was signed. That's a big thing. The missiles they were testing.
The site will be destroyed very soon.
"Today is the beginning of the arduous process. Our
wide open. Peace is always worth the effort. Especially in this
case. This should have been done years ago. This should have been
resolved a long time ago. We're doing it now. Chairman Kim has
the chance to seize an incredible future for his people. Anyone
can make war, but only the most courageous can make peace. The
current state of affairs cannot endure forever.
"The people of north Korea, north and south, are truly
wonderful and gifted people. They share the same heritage and
language and culture and destiny. To realize their amazing
destiny and reunite their national family, the menace of nuclear
weapons will now be removed. In the meantime, the sanctions will
remain in effect.
"We dream of a future where all Koreans can live
harmony and where families are reunited and hopes are reborn and
where the light of peace chases away the darkness of war. This
bright future is within and this is what is happening. It is
right there. It is within our reach. It's going to be there. It
will happen. People thought this could never take place. It is
now taking place. It is a very great day.
"It's a very great moment in the history of the world.
Chairman Kim is on his way back to north Korea and I know for a
fact that as soon as he arrives he will start a process that will
make a lot of people very happy and very safe. So it is an honour
to be with everybody today. The media. This is a big gathering of
media, I will say. Makes me feel very uncomfortable. It is what
it is. People understand that this is something very important to
all of us, including yourselves and your families. So thank you
for being here."
In response to questions from reporters, Trump stated
"[Reducing U.S. Forces numbers in Korea] is not part of the equation
right now. At some point I hope it will be." Regarding the lifting of
sanctions, he said "When we are sure that the nukes are no longer a
factor. Sanctions played a big role. They will come off at that point.
I hope it is soon."
Trump said follow-up negotiations led by U.S. Secretary
State Mike Pompeo would begin the following week.
Responses to Summit
In the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), Rodong
Sinmun, the official organ
Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea, devoted the
first four pages of its June 13 edition to the summit. This included 30
photographs from the summit.
Special coverage of the Summit in DPRK newspaper Rodong Sinmun -- click to enlarge.
Before the week was out, the DPRK had begun to
implement the Summit's agreements. President Trump, in a June 15
with Fox News, reported that the DPRK had already begun to return
the remains of U.S. soldiers.
President Moon, of the Republic of Korea (ROK) in an
official statement issued that day after the Summit, expressed "warm
congratulations on the
success of the historic north Korea-U.S. Summit." He wrote, "The June
12 Sentosa agreement will go down as a historic event
that brought the world's last Cold War to an end and is a great
victory achieved together by the U.S. and south and north Korea,
as well as a step forward for the people of the world who desire
peace." He also expressed "great praise for the courage and
resolution of the two leaders, President Trump and Chairman Kim,
who boldly chose a new transformation rather than resigning
themselves to an old and familiar reality." He acknowledged Trump
for "achieving a great feat that no one else has been able to
accomplish" and wrote that Kim "will be remembered as the driving
force for the historic moment in which [the DPRK] took its first
bold step toward the world." He echoed the remarks of Trump and
Kim during the summit when he said, "We will put the dark times of war
and conflict behind us and write a new history of peace and
cooperation." South Korea will "join north Korea on that journey," he
President Moon pledged the ROK's commitment to do its
ensure that DPRK-U.S. relations do not regress despite whatever
difficulties may lie ahead, and that the ROK extended its
"unstinting cooperation with the U.S., north Korea, and the
international community to ensure the agreement [signed in
Singapore] is fully implemented." He promised that "As President
of the Republic of Korea, I will make every effort so that
permanent peace is established on the Korean Peninsula and a new
era of coexistence and prosperity begins."
President Moon and his cabinet watch a live broadcast of the Summit
during a meeting.
Immediately after the Summit, China called for
against the DPRK to be lifted. On June 14, State Councilor and
Foreign Minister Wang Yi said that China supports dialogue that
brings the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue onto the right track
for a peaceful settlement. Wang said the Summit had important
historic significance. It brought the Korean Peninsula nuclear
issue onto the right track of dialogue and peaceful settlement,
which accords with the common interests of parties concerned, as
well as the common expectation of the international community, and
helps to promote the goal of denuclearization, peace and
stability on the Korean Peninsula, Wang said. He added that China
appreciates the unremitting efforts of the United States. Wang
stated that in his meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Mike
Pompeo later that day that he would be "willing to listen to the
introduction from [...] and have an in-depth exchange of views
with the U.S. side to promote the political settlement of the
Korean Peninsula nuclear issue."
Russian President Vladimir Putin said of the Summit:
highly appreciate the meeting between north Korean leader Kim
Jong-un and U.S. President Trump, which was held most recently, on
June 12." He noted that the meeting was the first step towards
fully resolving the issue, which was made thanks to the two
leaders' goodwill. "It creates conditions for moving forward and
reduces the level of tensions around the Korean Peninsula," Putin
Minister Sergey Lavrov on June 13 stated that the direct contact
between the U.S. and north
Korean leaders is "worth support," the TASS news agency
reported. The "Russian-Chinese roadmap that was proposed less
than a year ago stipulated the rejection of a hostile rhetoric
and provocative actions by both sides at the first stage and the
establishment of direct contact and the start of discussions on
all problems of both sides at the second stage," Lavrov said.
"By all accounts, the interactions between Washington and Pyongyang are
leading exactly in this direction. President Trump's statement that
there is no need for new U.S.-south Korean drills at the specified
stage will help further gain the right pace." Of the joint statement
signed in Singapore, Lavrov remarked that it "is apparently a
framework. Much time is needed to coordinate the details linked to the
most difficult problem of the nuclear potential. I hope that the
negotiators will have enough patience for it."
After addressing the need for the DPRK to "receive security
guarantees as a result of this process" of denuclearization,
Lavrov raised the need for multilateral participation. "Regarding
all the importance of the solution of the problems between the
United States and north Korea, including the peninsula
denuclearization stages and security guarantees, it is clear that
it will hardly be possible to solve these problems in the
bilateral format," Lavrov stressed. "All the participants of the
Six-Party Talks have always proceeded from the fact that this
process has to result in the creation of a system of peace,
security and stability across Northeast Asia."
Russia has also called for the lifting of sanctions
the DPRK, as stated by Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria
Zakharova on June 15: "We are certain that modification of the UN
Council's sanctions against north Korea can and must become one
of the most important components of normalization in the region,
the more so, since the corresponding resolutions repeatedly
confirmed the Security Council's readiness for such adjustments
in accordance with the dynamics of the situation.
dynamic is obvious. It might provide considerable backing for a
political and diplomatic settlement in the region of Northeast
Asia. [...] We are for the fastest cancellation of all such
unilateral restrictions, in particular, the so-called secondary,
She also conveyed Russia's willingness to cooperate on
matters related to the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula,
"If Russia's participation is required in the capacity of
a member of international organizations or as a country having
great experience, it will be prepared for cooperation over all
The responses of Japan and Canada remained stuck in the
Cold War anti-communist framework aimed at demonizing the DPRK to push
agendas which are not favourable to peace and the interests of the
peoples. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe made a point of saying that
at the summit, Trump raised the issue of the so-called abductees --
Japanese citizens alleged to have been kidnapped by the DPRK -- on his
behalf. The Japanese Foreign Ministry stated, "Even after the
U.S.-North Korea Summit, our stance remains that we cannot normalize
relations without a resolution on the abduction, nuclear and missile
issues." However, Abe is now considering holding direct talks with
Chairman Kim later this year to deal with this and related issues, news
Canada's Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland
issued a June 12 statement which continued to place unilateral blame on
the DPRK for tension on the Korean Peninsula and to push for the
enforcement of sanctions:
"Canada has always believed a diplomatic solution to
the North Korean nuclear issue is both essential and possible. We
welcome the dialogue between the leaders of the United States and North
Korea that took place today in Singapore. This meeting was
an important step toward advancing peace and stability on the
"As G7 leaders recognized at their summit in Canada
week, the situation on the Korean Peninsula is not just a
regional issue, but a question of international peace and
security. We note North Korea's reaffirmation of its commitment
to denuclearization made in the Panmunjom Declaration of April
27, 2018, and support further dialogue toward the complete,
verifiable and irreversible dismantlement of North Korea's
weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs. The
global sanctions regime imposed against North Korea in support of
the rules-based international order must remain in place until
Pyongyang changes course. This is North Korea's only viable
option for a brighter future within the international
"By participating in this historic meeting, North Korea
demonstrated its willingness to discuss denuclearization. We look
forward to seeing North Korea follow through on this commitment
with concrete actions and to move decisively toward a more
positive future in the interest of the people of both North Korea
and South Korea."
Halting of U.S.-Led War Games
The U.S. Defense Department announced that U.S.
Trump's remarks at the DPRK-U.S. Summit about halting the joint
military exercises between the U.S. and south Korea had been
coordinated in advance, with Reuters reporting that Trump had
discussed his planned remarks with U.S. Defense Secretary James
South Korean newspaper the Hankyoreh writes,
large-scale south Korea-U.S. military exercises that are
currently held on a yearly basis are Key Resolve, Foal Eagle and
Ulchi-Freedom Guardian. If the exercises are actually halted, the
first to be affected will likely be the Ulchi-Freedom Guardian
exercises, which are scheduled for August. The Team Spirit
exercises were not held in 1992 in order to set the mood for
dialogue at the time. Trump did place a condition on halting the
exercises -- the negotiations must be ongoing -- suggesting that
he intends to use the possibility of holding the exercises as
leverage during ongoing negotiations with the north."
On June 14, the Pentagon issued a statement saying
U.S. and south Korea have agreed to work together to fulfill U.S.
President Donald Trump's "guidance" on the joint military
exercises. It said that U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis
spoke over the phone with his south Korean counterpart Song Young-moo
that day to discuss the results of the U.S.-DPRK summit and
"their mutual support to ongoing diplomatic efforts, [including]
how we are working together to fulfill the President's guidance
on U.S.-ROK combined military exercises."
The south Korean military is ultimately under U.S.
and the presidential Blue House said on June 15 that whether to
halt the south Korea-U.S. war games would be announced soon.
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