Donald Trump made history on Sunday after he became the first sitting President of the United States of America to step on North Korean soil to meet the country’s Supreme Leader, Kim Jong-un.
President Trump crossed over the demarcation line at the Demilitarized Military Zone (DMZ) that divides the two Korea countries and entered into the North Korean area of the border to shake hands with Chairman Kim.
The symbolic meeting came after the US President’s invitation on Twitter to his North Korean counterpart via Twitter on Saturday.
“Good to see you again. I never expected to meet you at this place,” a smiling Kim told President Trump through an interpreter in an encounter broadcast live on international television.
“Big moment, tremendous progress”, the US President responded.
Speaking after he crossed into North Korea with President Trump, Chairman Kim said: “I believe this is an expression of his willingness to eliminate all the unfortunate past and open a new future.”
Although the US President had earlier said that the event would be a brief one with possibly only photo-ops, both he and Chairman Kim had a meeting that lasted close to an hour.
Both leaders were joined by South Korea’s President, Moon Jae-in, what could be described as an unprecedented three-way gathering.
Calling their friendship “particularly great”, President Trump – who once referred to Chairman Kim as “little rocket man” – said it was a “great day for the world” and that he was “proud to step over the line” between the Koreas.
Speaking after the meeting, the US President confirmed that denuclearisation talks between the two countries would resume shortly.
He, however, told journalists that he was “not looking for speed [but] looking to get it right.”
President Trump also disclosed to journalists that he has invited Chairman Kim to visit the White House.
He reiterated that sanctions placed on North Korea would remain in place during the talks.
Relations between the United States and North Korea has been virtually non-existent until President Trump decided to meet with Chairman Kim at their first summit in Singapore.
Their second summit in Hanoi, Vietnam, ended abruptly without agreement on North Korea’s progress towards denuclearisation.
The US president has repeatedly insisted that North Korea must dismantle its nuclear arsenal before economic sanctions can be lifted.