US President Donald Trump crossed the inter-Korean border to the north as he walked with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ), during a meeting on Sunday that was arranged through Trump's twitter post the previous day.
The meeting was historic: Trump became the first US president to set foot on North Korean soil, and the first to be arrange via Twitter.
The meeting was also important as South Korean President Moon Jae-in, Kim and Trump held three-way talks on South Korean soil.
The North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, wearing his traditional Mao suit, was walking down the stairs towards him on the Northern side of the line.
At 3:45pm (local time), the two leaders shook hands over the concrete slab that forms the military demarcation line between South and North Korea.
“Good to see you again”, said Kim in English, adding that he would have “never expected” to see the US president “at this place”.
At 3:46pm, Trump crossed the line, becoming the first sitting US president to step into North Korea.
He then walked a few meters into the North together with Kim.
“Good progress, good progress”, he said as the two leaders crossed back to the South, where the two leaders held a bilateral meeting in The Freedom House on the South Korean side.
'Stepping across that line'
“I just want to say this is my honour,” said Trump. “Stepping across that line is a great honour, great progress has been made, great friendships have been made and this has been, in particular, a great friendship.”
Trump has thanked Kim for being available to meet at such short notice, saying he called him up on Saturday.
“We met and we liked each other from day one, and that is very important.”
"I'll invite him to the White House right now," Trump said before shaking hands with Kim. "A lot of really positive things are happening," Trump said earlier. "Really positive."
In an unprecedented move, Trump invited Kim for a meeting via Twitter on Saturday, June 29. Trump also commented on the fact that, for the first time, people are hearing from Kim directly.
“You hear that voice, no one hears this voice, he doesn’t do press conferences.”
Trump said he thanks Kim for responding to his Twitter invitation to meet. “If he didn’t show up, the press was going to make me look very bad,” says Trump.
“If you look back two-and-a-half years, before I was president, it was a very very bad situation, a very dangerous situation for North Korea, South Korea, for the world. The relationship we have developed has been so much for so many people,” says Trump.
“Thank you for asking me to step over that line, I didn’t know if you were going to ask me to do that, I thought you might, but I was ready to do that if you asked.”
Trump called the meeting “very historic”.
'Good news nobody expects'
Kim, speaking through a translator, said: “The great relationship between President Trump and I, I don’t think if we didn’t have such a great relationship we could have organised this meeting in just a day. I would like to use this strong relationship to create more good news that nobody expects,” says Kim.
It was established by the provisions of the Korean Armistice Agreement to serve as a buffer zone between North Korea and South Korea.
DMZ was created by an agreement between North Korea, the People's Republic of China and the United Nations Command in 1953.
Kim confirmed he heard from Trump yesterday afternoon and wanted to meet him again.
Kim said: “I believe that meeting here, which is a symbol of division and a hostile past, I think meeting here, two countries that have a hostile past, we are showcasing to the world that we have a new present and we have a positive meeting going forward.”