With wide grins and a historic handshake, President Donald Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un met at the heavily fortified Demilitarized Zone on Sunday and agreed to revive talks on the pariah nation’s nuclear program.
Trump, pressing his bid for a legacy-defining accord, became the first sitting American leader to step into North Korea.
What originally was intended to be an impromptu exchange of pleasantries turned into a 50-minute meeting, another historic first in the yearlong rapprochement between the two technically warring nations.
It marks a return to face-to-face contact between the leaders after talks broke down during a summit in Vietnam in February.
Trump announced afterward that the two nations had agreed to resume discussions in the coming weeks.
Significant doubts remain, though, about the future of the negotiations and the North’s willingness to give up its stockpile of nuclear weapons.
In a made-for television moment, the two leaders 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, before escorting Kim back to the South for a sit-down at Freedom House.