Kim arrives to rock-star welcome in Singapore

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un arrives in Singapore June 11, 2018, for his summit with President Trump (Video screenshot)

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un arrives in Singapore June 11, 2018, for his summit with President Trump (Video screenshot)

He’s the leader of one of the world’s most repressive dictatorships, but North Korea’s Kim Jong Un was greeted with a rock star’s welcome Monday to Singapore ahead of his highly anticipated summit with President Trump.

Arriving at the Marina Bay Sands hotel, cheers and shouts of “Mr. Kim! Mr. Kim!” could be heard from a gathering of onlookers.

According to a schedule released by the White House, the summit will begin at 9:15 a.m. Singapore time Tuesday, which is 9:15 p.m. Monday night, Eastern Time.

A photo opportunity at the Capella hotel on the Singaporean island of Sentosa will take place before the two leaders meet.

A one-on-one meeting between Trump and Kim, with only their respective translators present, is scheduled to last about 45 minutes, with a focus on North Korea’s nuclear program.

At 10 a.m. Singapore time — 10 p.m. Monday in New York — the participants will be expanded to include Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Chief of Staff John Kelly and National Security Advisor John Bolton.

The expanded bilateral meeting is scheduled to end at 11:30 a.m. local time when the U.S. and North Korean teams will have a working lunch.

At that time, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders, Ambassador Sung Kim and National Security Council Senior Director for Asia Matt Pottinger will join the U.S. team.

The president will speak to reporters at 4 p.m. Singapore time, or 4 a.m. Eastern Tuesday morning. He is expected to depart for the United States shortly after the media availability.

The U.S. has decided not to bring up human rights at the summit, two administration officials told NBC News.

Already, President Trump has assured Kim he would be willing to offer security guarantees and financial aid if the North Korean communist dictator gives up his nuclear arsenal.

“This would be with Kim Jong Un something where … he’d be running his country,” Trump said last month. “If we make a deal, I think Kim Jong Un is going to be very, very happy.”

Trump’s approach is in line with decades of U.S. policy with North Korea prioritizing denuclearization over holding the regime accountable for the severe oppression of its citizens, including murder, torture and starvation.


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