As the scheduled meeting between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore nears next month, there has been a flurry of activities. One of the top aides to Kim Jong Un has arrived in Singapore, revealed Japanese public broadcaster NHK.
Kim Chang Son is the North Korean leader’s de facto chief of staff who flew to Singapore via Beijing last night.
In addition to this, a team of US government officials including Joe Hagin, White House deputy chief of staff for operations has left US Yokota Air Base in Japan for Singapore, reported NHK.
A ‘pre-advance’ team was travelling to Singapore to meet with North Koreans, said White House.
It is also being reported that North Korea's Kim Yong Chol, vice chairman of the ruling Workers' Party's Central Committee, was scheduled to fly to the United States on Wednesday after speaking to Chinese officials in Beijing.
If his trip is confirmed, Kim Yong Chol would be the most senior North Korean official to meet with top officials in the United States since Jo Myong Rok, a marshal, met with then-President Bill Clinton at the White House in 2000.
Earlier, the much-hyped Singapore summit came under a cloud as US President Trump cancelled the meeting with Kim citing ‘open hostility’ from Pyongyang. However, within 24 hours he reversed course saying it could still go ahead after productive talks were held with North Korean officials.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in also held a surprise meeting on Saturday at the border village of Panmunjom, during which they agreed the North Korea-US summit must be held.
There is also the possibility that South Korean President Moon Jae-in could also join Trump and Kim in the Singapore summit for ensuring peace in the Korean peninsula.