11 June 2018
For the first time, a sitting US President and a North Korean leader, representing two countries which have never seen eye to eye, will meet face to face, and the island nation of Singapore will host this historic event.
While meetings between leaders are regular features of international relations, few can be perceived as significant turning points in human history.
Hark back to the height of the Cold War, and you come across one of the most unexpected summits to have taken place in the last hundred years – the meeting between US President Richard Nixon and his Chinese counterpart Mao Zedong in Beijing.
“For East Asia, the last most important summit was probably the Nixon-Mao summit that changed the course of the Cold War,” associate professor Bhubhindar Singh, a Northeast Asia expert from the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, told Channel NewsAsia.
“For Kim, this meeting is important for several reasons: To gain legitimacy for himself and his country. This meeting is also important for North Korea as it is in negotiation talks with the most important threat to its regime and national security,” associate professor Bhubhindar Singh said.
According to associate professor Bhubhindar Singh: “The selection of Singapore says a lot of who Singapore is – an efficient, honest, neutral country that can be trusted to hold such an important summit.”
GPO / IDSS / Online
Last updated on 11/06/2018