President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will begin their historic summit with a one-on-one meeting, focusing on their personal rapport as they seek a deal for Pyongyang to give up its nuclear weapons, an administration official said Monday. "If diplomacy doesn't move in the right direction, sanctions will increase".
While it would be good to be optimistic of the summit's outcome, some apprehension still exist as both Trump and Kim are strong leaders with their own mind, the source said.
Trump landed in Singapore a little after 8:30 p.m. local time for the highly-anticipated meeting with the North Korean leader, which is set to take place on Tuesday.
Trump and Kim planned to meet one on one, joined only by translators, for up to two hours before admitting their respective advisers, a USA official said.
Kim's main concern is the survival of his own regime - South Korean President Moon Jae-in told reporters that the Pyongyang leader had "concerns on whether he could trust that the United States would end its hostile policy and guarantee the security of his regime when the North denuclearises itself".
Moon also said that the region can not "depend just on the North Korea-U.S. talks" and that South Korea must be included in any possible future negotiations that emerge from Tuesday's summit.
Trump initially touted the potential for a grand bargain with North Korea to rid itself of a nuclear missile program that has advanced rapidly to threaten the United States.
Shortly after his arrival, Mr Kim met Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the presidential palace.
Kim Jong-un's Flight to Singapore a Precision Maneuver
North Korea wants a staged approach to dismantling its nuclear weapons program and a security guarantee from the USA in return. Curious onlookers wait for the departure of Donald Trump's motorcade from Singapore's presidential palace.
During the meeting, the officials also celebrated Trump's birthday.
Kim's private plane did travel to Singapore, but is believed to have carried sister Kim Yo Jong and other top-ranking members of the delegation.
At a press conference earlier on Sunday, Loong said that the summit cost approximately $20 million, which is a price the Singapore was "willing to pay".
As Trump was trying to build a bridge with Kim, he was smashing longtime alliances with Western allies, withdrawing from the G7 joint communique, escalating a trade fight and launching blistering criticism against Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau following the summit in Quebec on the weekend.
The talks have been portrayed by Trump in recent days more as a get-to-know-you session.
The standard thinking goes that he needs quick help to stabilize and then rebuild an economy that has suffered amid a decades-long pursuit of nuclear bombs, and that the North Koreans see a unique chance to win concessions, legitimacy and protection from a meeting with a highly unconventional US president who's willing to consider options past American leaders would not.
"We would of course have offered hospitality", Dr Balakrishnan added, when asked if Singapore paid for the North Korean contingent's hotel stay at the St Regis. "We have to get denuclearization, we have to get something going".
An entrance glows outside the Capella Hotel on Sentosa Island in Singapore June 5, 2018.
The top USA and North Korean negotiators had earlier emerged from a last-ditch meeting at the Ritz Carlton with pursed lips, and no sign of whether an attempt to narrow the gap between U.S. and North Korean expectations of what denuclearisation should look like, had worked. "It's a one-time shot".