SINGAPORE: 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.
Mr Trump was speaking to the media as he wrapped up his historic summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore on Tuesday (Jun 12).
Just hours earlier, the two leaders had signed a joint document in which Mr Kim reaffirmed his “firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula”.
Mr 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.
Mr Trump said his talks with Mr 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 US 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.
Mr Kim agreed to destroy a missile engine testing site after the signing of the agreement, Mr 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, Mr Trump also expressed confidence that Mr Kim would honour the commitments he had made.
“(Mr 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.”
Mr Trump said during the signing ceremony that he and Mr 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.
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