Vietnam Time

6/12/2018 4:55:00 PM

North Korea has potential to be a 'great place': Trump

North Korea has the potential to be a "great place", United States President Donald Trump has said, adding that there is "no limit" to what the reclusive country can achieve when it gives up its nuclear weapons and embraces commerce.

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to the media after a historic summit on June 12th with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Trump was speaking to the media as he wrapped up his historic summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore on Tuesday (June 12th).

Just hours earlier, the two leaders had signed a joint document in which Kim reaffirmed his "firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula".

Trump also committed to provide security guarantees to North Korea, without stating what those guarantees might be.

The two parties also said they would jointly work to build a "lasting and stable" peace regime on the Korean Peninsula.

Trump said his talks with Kim were "honest, direct and productive".

"We are prepared to start a history and we are ready to write a new chapter between our nations," he said.

The U.S. president said that Tuesday was the start of an "arduous process" but that "peace is always worth the effort".

"Anyone can make war but only the most courageous can make peace. The current state of affairs cannot endure forever," he added.

Kim agreed to destroy a missile engine testing site after the signing of the agreement, Trump said.

The North Korean leader, he added, has "an opportunity like no other to be remembered as the leader who ushers in a glorious new era of security and prosperity for his people".

Responding to questions from the media, Trump also expressed confidence that Kim would honour the commitments he had made.

"(Kim) was very firm in the fact that he wants to do this. I think he might want to do this as much or even more than me as he sees a very bright future for North Korea," he said.

"We signed a very comprehensive document today and I believe he's going to live up to that document. When he lands, I think he will start that process right away ... We have a great team. I think he wants to get it done."

Trump said during the signing ceremony that he and Kim had "developed a special bond".

Earlier in the day, the two leaders walked across the aisles towards each other at the Capella Hotel in Singapore's Sentosa island and shook hands as the world watched.

"THE WORLD WILL SEE A MAJOR CHANGE"

The leaders held talks for several hours along with delegates, before signing a document in which both committed to work towards the complete denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula.

At the signing, both Kim and Trump expressed satisfaction at how their landmark meeting went - with the U.S. leader saying it was "better than expected" as they negotiated an end to a decades-old stand-off.

Kim said the "world will now see a major change" following the Singapore summit.

The pair signed what Trump called a "pretty comprehensive" and "very important" document, which spoke of "new U.S.-DPRK relations" and committed Washington to "security guarantees".

When asked about denuclearisation Trump said "we're starting that process", adding that it would begin "very, very quickly."

At around 1.40pm (local time), the leaders emerged along with key officials to sign a document.

"A lot of work and a lot of preparation went into this," said Trump. "The meeting went better than expected and no one could've expected this."

Kim expressed thanks to the U.S. president for the summit's success.

"We had a historic meeting and we’ve decided to leave the past behind," he said. "The world will see a major change. I would like to express my gratitude to President Donald Trump for making this happen."

Both leaders shook hands again at the signing table with Trump saying he had developed a "special bond" with his younger counterpart.

Asked by reporters if he would invite Kim to Washington, Trump said: "Absolutely, I would."

As both leaders stood on the verandah before Kim's departure from the Capella hotel, Trump said: "We'll meet again. We will meet many times." The president added that he learned Kim is a "very talented man" and "loves his country very much".

Trump said Kim was a "worthy negotiator", adding the North Korean leader had a "great personality" and was "very smart"./.

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