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Trump in North Korea

Trump in North Korea

U.S. President Donald Trump invited North Korea's Kim Jong-un to shake hands during a possible visit to the demilitarized zone with South Korea.

Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham got hands-on with security about an hour after Trump stepped onto North Korean territory and shook hands with Kim: a gesture South Korean President Moon Jae-in called "truly historic".

"We just had a very, very good meeting with Chairman Kim", Trump said after an unexpectedly long meeting with Kim at the Freedom House, on the South Korean side of Panmunjom.

The Korean peninsula denuclearization dialogue is stuck since Hanoi summit between Trump and Kim when the former left the meeting mid-way saying he could not agree to all demands of North Korean leader.

"Well, we'll see. He very much wants to", Trump had said when asked by a reporter whether Kim would meet him at the DMZ later on Sunday when Trump is scheduled to visit the heavily armed border. "I didn't really expect it, we were in Japan for the G20", Mr Trump said. "A handshake means a lot", he said.

He becomes the first serving American president to step into the country.

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

Mr Trump leaves North Korean soil with Mr Kim next to him.

A beaming Kim and shook Trump's hand, saying it was good to see the US president.

"The 80 million people on the Korean peninsula have been given new hope today", said South Korean President Moon.

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Earlier Trump said the two would "just shake hands quickly and say hello because we haven't seen each other since Việt Nam", Trump said earlier.

It was not immediately clear if Grisham received medical attention or if North Korean guards injured anyone else.

The two leaders insist they maintain a good personal relationship and recently exchanged letters that raised optimism they could kickstart the stalled negotiations.

"If Trump thinks he can do this by continue to engage Kim Jong Un, let's give it a try", Graham said.

He added: "Stepping across that line was a great honour".

"It will demonstrate that nuclear weapons turn a pariah into a force to negotiate with", she said.

The 50-minute impromptu meeting at the DMZ comes after previous negotiations between Pyongyang and Washington in Vietnam abruptly ended in a deadlock in February 2019 after the U.S. ultimately refused to offer North Korea any relief from economic sanctions that had been placed on the state. "I say that for the press, they have no appreciation for what we've done", Trump said.

"Peace and security on the Korean Peninsula will entirely depend on the U.S. future attitude, and the DPRK will gird itself for every possible situation", KCNA quoted Kim as saying in April. Part of the resolution includes the US holding off on threatened additional tariffs on Chinese goods, according to Chinese state-run news agency Xinhua.

"This is a historic moment", Kim agreed through a translator, calling the visit, "a very courageous and historic act".