President Donald Trump made history on Sunday when he became the first sitting United States president to step foot in North Korea.
“Donald Trump became the first U.S. president to step into North Korea Sunday, reaching across the demarcation line to shake hands with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and then, at Kim’s invitation, stepping across the border and into North Korea — in a historic moment Trump called ‘a great honor,'” ABC News reports.
According to the report, Kim, speaking through a translator, called Trump’s decision to visit him and his country a “courageous and determined act.”
“I just want to thank you, it was very quick notice and I just want to thank you,” Trump said via ABC News.
U.S. President Donald Trump meets North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in the demilitarized zone between the two Koreas, becoming the first U.S. president to set foot in North Korea when he briefly crossed the military demarcation line. More here: https://t.co/NpcdzIOTl7 pic.twitter.com/1eqbE1NVhA
— Reuters Top News (@Reuters) June 30, 2019
“Good to see you again, I never expected to see you in this place,” Kim responded.
The historic moment came amid a renewed push for peace and denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula and while President Trump was coming home from the G20 Summit in Japan.
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The Associated Press reports:
The border encounter was a made-for television moment. The men strode toward one another from opposite sides of the Joint Security Area and shook hands over the raised patch of concrete at the Military Demarcation Line as cameras clicked and photographers jostled to capture the scene.
After asking if Kim wanted him to cross, Trump took 10 steps into the North with Kim at his side, then escorted Kim back to the South for talks at Freedom House, where they agreed to revive the stalled negotiations.
“I was proud to step over the line,” Trump told Kim as they met in on the South Korean side of the truce village of Panmunjom. “It is a great day for the world.”
Kim hailed the moment, saying of Trump, “I believe this is an expression of his willingness to eliminate all the unfortunate past and open a new future.” Kim added that he was “surprised” when Trump issued an unorthodox meeting invitation by tweet on Saturday.
— ABC News (@ABC) June 30, 2019
Trump said the two leaders “moved mountains” to arrange the last-minute meeting.
“I was surprised to see you expressed an intent to meet,” Kim told Trump, referring to Trump’s offer for a meeting in a tweet on Saturday. Trump came to South Korea after attending a Group of 20 summit in Osaka, Japan.
“This is an expression of his willingness to leave behind the past and work toward a new future,” Kim said.
Kim said it would be a great honor if Trump visited his capital of Pyongyang. The two agreed to visit each other’s country “at the right time,” Trump said.
“To cross that line was a great honor,” Trump said, referring to his brief incursion into the North Korean side of the DMZ.
“President Trump is the maker of peace in the Korean Peninsula.”
– South Korean President Moon
No matter who you are, you can’t deny that it’s impressive how he’s doing all of this while the Democrats and media attack him everyday. 🇺🇸
— Ryan Fournier (@RyanAFournier) June 30, 2019