Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un in North Korea 300619 CREDIT YONHAP PA
North Korea

Donald Trump Takes First Steps In North Korea In Kim Jong Un Meeting

Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un in North Korea 300619 CREDIT YONHAP PA

Donald Trump is the first sitting US president to step on North Korean soil (Picture: Yonhap/PA).

Donald Trump has become the first US President to visit North Korea.

During a meeting with the North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Sunday, Mr Trump visited the heavily fortified Demilitarised Zone and briefly crossed into North Korean territory.

The act is the latest milestone in the year-long diplomatic talks between the two nations.

"I was proud to step over the line," Mr Trump told Mr Kim as they met in a building known as Freedom House on the South Korean side of the village.

"It is a great day for the world."

"I believe this is an expression of his willingness to eliminate all the unfortunate past and open a new future," said Mr Kim speaking about the US President.

The North Korean leader also added he was "surprised" to have received Mr Trump's invite to meet via a tweet on Saturday.

Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un in North Korea
President Trump's meeting with the North Korean leader was the first between the two since February (Picture: Yonhap/PA).

Mr Trump was joined in the Freedom House conversation with Kim by his daughter and son-in-law, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, both senior White House advisers.

Peering into North Korea from Observation Post Ouellette, the US President told reporters before meeting Mr Kim that there has been "tremendous" improvement since his first meeting with the North's leader in Singapore last year.

Mr Trump claimed the situation used to be marked by "tremendous danger" but "after our first summit, all of the danger went away."

The meeting marks a return to face-to-face contact between the leaders since talks broke down during a summit in Vietnam in February.

What was originally expected to be a brief exchange of pleasantries over the raised line of concrete marking the border between North and South, Mr Trump had said it would last "two minutes", turned into private talks stretching beyond a half hour.

North Korea has yet to provide an accounting of its nuclear stockpile, let alone begin the process of dismantling its arsenal.

The meeting at the truce city of Panmunjom also represented a striking acknowledgement by Mr Trump of the authoritarian Mr Kim's legitimacy over a nation with an abysmal human rights record.

As he stood beside Mr Kim, Mr Trump told reporters he would invite the North Korean leader to the United States, potentially even to the White House.

"I would invite him right now," Mr Trump said.

Mr Kim, speaking through a translator, reciprocated that it would be an "honour" to invite Mr Trump to the North Korean capital of Pyongyang "at the right time".

	Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un handshake in North Korea 300619 CREDIT YONHAP PA
President Trump suggested Mr Kim could be invited to the White House in the future (Picture: Yonhap/PA).

Mr Trump's summit with Mr Kim in Vietnam earlier this year collapsed without an agreement for denuclearising the Korean Peninsula.

He became the first sitting US president to meet with the leader of the isolated nation last year when they signed an agreement in Singapore to bring the North toward denuclearisation.

Substantive talks between the nations have largely broken down since the Vietnam summit.

Join Our Newsletter


How new Mk 41 Vertical Missile systems increase firepower for Royal Navy

French infantry troops commitment to security of Nato's eastern border

How is Estonia dealing with heightened Russian threat to its security?