Trump hails deal after historic Kim summit

Agencies
President Donald Trump says the US is "prepared to start a new history" with North Korea

US President Donald Trump says he believes North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will move immediately on steps toward denuclearisation and that the process is moving rapidly.

"I just think that we are now going to start the process of denuclearisation of North Korea. I believe that he's going back and will start it virtually immediately," Trump said in an interview on Fox News after the US-North Korea summit in Singapore.

"And he's already indicated that. It's a process and it's really moving rapidly."

Both leaders expressed optimism throughout roughly five hours of talks on Tuesday and, speaking at a news conference after the meeting, Trump thanked Kim for "taking the first bold step toward a bright new future for his people".

The US president said "real change is indeed possible" and he is prepared "to start a new history" and "write a new chapter" between the two nations, adding: "The past does not have to define the future."

Trump announced during a free-flowing news conference that he will freeze US military "war games" with ally South Korea while negotiations between the two countries continue.

He cast the decision as a cost-saving measure, but Pyongyang has long objected to the drills as a security threat.

Trump acknowledged that the timetable for denuclearisation is long, but said: "Once you start the process it means it's pretty much over."

The president said US intelligence on the North Korean nuclear stockpile is limited, "probably less there than any other country", but added: "We have enough intelligence to know that what they have is very substantial."

Trump said Kim accepted his invitation to visit the White House at the "appropriate" time.

Light on specifics, the document signed by the leaders largely amounted to an agreement to continue discussions as it echoed previous public statements and past commitments.

It did not include an agreement to take steps towards ending the technical state of warfare between the US and North Korea.

The pair promised in the document to "build a lasting and stable peace regime" on the Korean peninsula and to repatriate the remains of prisoners of war and those missing in action during the Korean War.

Trump flew out of Singapore on Tuesday night, saying he didn't want to stay an extra night when everything he'd set out to do had been accomplished.

The president will be stopping in Guam and Hawaii as he makes his way back to Washington.