The Latest: Senator says Kim already can claim some success

Kim Jong Un, Lee Hsien Loong
The Associated Press

SINGAPORE (AP) — The Latest on a summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump in Singapore (all times local):

10:30 p.m.

The top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee says the North Korean leader has already achieved some success just by bringing the American president to the table.

Sen. Bob Menendez of New Jersey says: “To the extent that Kim Jong Un has already gone from international pariah to being normalized internationally, you have to say that he’s had some success here.”

Menendez also stresses that getting a nuclear deal with North Korea will not be the hard point, noting that several previous presidents were able to strike deals only to see them fall apart. The test will be whether a deal has “verifiable elements of a denuclearization,” to prove whether the North has dismantled its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

Menendez spoke Sunday on ABC’s “This Week” as President Donald Trump arrived in Singapore ahead of Tuesday’s talks with Kim.

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8:25 p.m.

President Donald Trump has arrived in Singapore where he will meet with North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un.

Trump landed at 8:21 Sunday evening at the island city-state’s Paya Lebar Air Base, traveling from Canada, where he attended a meeting of the Group of Seven Nations.

Trump’s high-risk meeting with Kim is scheduled for 9 a.m. Tuesday, or 9 p.m. June 11 on the U.S. East Coast. The president hopes to win a legacy-making deal with the North to give up their nuclear weapons, though he has recently sought to manage expectations, saying that it may take more than one meeting.

This will be the first summit of its kind between a leader of North Korea and a sitting U.S. president. The North has faced crippling diplomatic and economic sanctions as it has advanced development of its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

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7:10 p.m.

Pope Francis has prayed that the summit this week between the U.S. and North Korean leaders succeeds in laying the groundwork for peace.

Francis expressed hope Sunday that Tuesday’s talks between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore will “contribute to the development of a positive path that will assure a future of peace for the Korean Peninsula and the entire world.”

He invited the thousands of faithful in St. Peter’s Square to pray with him so that the Virgin Mary “accompany these talks.” Francis said he wanted yet again to send “a special thought in friendship and prayer” to the beloved Korean people.

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6:50 p.m.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has met with Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong ahead of Tuesday’s summit with President Donald Trump.

Kim smiled broadly in the meeting Sunday evening.

Kim told Lee: “The entire world is watching the historic summit between the DPRK and the United States of America, and thanks to your sincere efforts … we were able to complete the preparation for the historic summit.”

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3:15 p.m.

A plane presumably carrying North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has arrived in Singapore ahead of Kim’s summit Tuesday with President Donald Trump.

The jet landed at the airport Sunday afternoon amid huge security precautions on the city-state island.

Kim is set to meet Tuesday with Trump in what’s shaping up to be one of the most unusual summits in modern history.

Despite the initial high stakes of a meeting meant to rid North Korea of its nuclear weapons, the talks have been portrayed by Trump in recent days more as a get-to-know-each-other meeting. He has also raised the possibility of further summits.

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