Cake and compliments as Trump, Kim meet Singapore PM Lee ahead of summit
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Cake and compliments as Trump, Kim meet Singapore PM Lee ahead of summit

US President Donald Trump met with Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in Singapore on Monday, one day before the historic summit between the United States and North Korea.

Trump’s convoy made its way along the cleared streets of downtown Singapore on its way to the Istana – the official residence of the prime minister – at midday today.

In his team are White House press secretary Sarah Huckerbee Sanders, Secretary of state Mike Pompeo, adviser Stephen Miller, Chief of Staff John Kelly, and controversial National Security Adviser John Bolton.

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US President Donald Trump and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong enjoy a working lunch with their teams at the presidential Istana in Singapore ahead of the US-DPRK Summit. June 11, 2018. Source: Ministry of Communications and Information, Republic of Singapore

The two leaders met for a very brief meeting before enjoying an extended working lunch with their respective teams.

A cake, complete with candles, was presented to Trump during the lunch to celebrate his upcoming June 14 birthday. The president will be turning 72.

SEE ALSO: A tale of tweeting: Kim and Trump’s road to Singapore

During their one-on-one meet, President Trump expressed America’s continued commitment to engage the region and reasserted his support for Singapore’s Chairmanship of ASEAN, according to a statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

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US President Donald Trump blows out the candle on his birthday cake during his working lunch with Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, June 11, 2018. Source: Ministry of Communications and Information, Republic of Singapore.

Concerns over the US’s loosening ties with Asia have abounded since Trump pulled out of the Tran-Pacific Trade deal as the first order of business when he took office in January 2017.

President Trump also accepted the invitation from President Halimah Yacob to make a State Visit to Singapore in November. The visit would coincide with the 6th ASEAN-US Summit and 13th East Asia Summit.

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US President Donald Trump meets Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the presidential Istana in Singapore ahead of the US-DPRK Summit. June 11, 2018. Source: Ministry of Communications and Information, Republic of Singapore

The meeting came one day after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un met with Lee on Sunday, hours after he touched down at Changi Airport. His visit to Singapore marks his third international trip since coming to power in 2011, the first of which was in March when he travelled to China in secrecy to meet with President Xi Jinping.

According to a statement from the Singapore Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the pair discussed “Singapore-DPRK relations, developments in the DPRK and regional developments, including the recent positive developments on the Korean Peninsula.”

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North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un meets Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the presidential Istana in Singapore ahead of the US-DPRK Summit. June 10, 2018. Source: Ministry of Communications and Information, Republic of Singapore

Lee also complimented Kim on his “bold and admirable” decision to attend tomorrow’s summit with the United States.

Kim is due to meet with Trump at 9am local time tomorrow at the Capella hotel on Singapore’s Sentosa island. The meeting will be the first time a sitting US president has met with a leader of the North Korean regime.