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Trump: I’ll know whether Kim summit will be successful ‘in first minute’

  • President speaks to press at international summit in Canada
  • Trump guided in nuclear talks by ‘just my touch, my feel’

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Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article titled “Trump: I’ll know whether Kim summit will be successful ‘in first minute'” was written by Sabrina Siddiqui in Washington and Martin Pengelly in New York, for theguardian.com on Saturday 9th June 2018 17.34 UTC

Donald Trump on Saturday said his summit with Kim Jong-un in Singapore would be a “one-time shot”. Speaking to reporters at the G7 summit in La Malbaie, Canada, the US president projected confidence over the prospects for a deal on denuclearization, stating: “I think within the first minute, I’ll know.”

“Just my touch, my feel, that’s what I do,” he said. “How long will it take to figure out if they’re serious? You know, the way they say you know if you’re going to like somebody in the first five seconds, you ever hear that one? I think very quickly I’ll know whether or not something good is going to happen.”

Trump spoke as he prepared to depart for Singapore and the first meeting between a North Korean leader and a sitting US president. The two leaders’ relationship began with a long period of mutual threats and abuse but a surprise and rapid diplomatic thaw has endured despite Trump’s abrupt cancellation of the summit late last month.

“You don’t know, it’s not been done before at this level,” Trump said of attempts to establish peace with a reclusive, authoritarian and nuclear-armed regime. He added: “This is a leader that’s really an unknown personality, people don’t know much about him. I think that he’s going to surprise on the upside, very much on the upside, we’ll see.”

The Trump administration has said it wants a “permanent, verifiable, irreversible” dismantling of North Korea’s nuclear weapons program and a peace treaty to formally end the Korean war, which ceased only with an armistice in 1953.

“It’s a one-time shot and I think it’s going to work out very well,” Trump said, though he also indicated that the summit may only be a starting point, saying it “may not work out. There’s a good chance it won’t work out. There’s probably an even better chance that it will take a period of time, it’ll be a process.”

The president also downplayed suggestions he was not well prepared, a notion he appeared to reinforce earlier this week when he said his approach to the meeting was not about preparation but “about attitude”. Those comments sparked concerns among national security experts that the North Korean leader could outfox his opposite number.

“So we’re going in with a very positive spirit, very well prepared, I think,” Trump said, before misidentifying the site of the meeting. “And by the way, we have worked very well with their people, they have many people now in Shanghai, our people have been – in Singapore – our people have been working very, very well with the representatives of North Korea and I think we’re going to come out fine.”

Asked about suggestions that even granting a meeting to Kim meant conceding valuable ground, he said: “Only the fake news says that. We just got three hostages back, we paid nothing … we have gotten … we haven’t done anything. The haters, they say, ‘Oh, you’re giving him a meeting’ – gimme a break, OK?”

Donald Trump leaves the summit, followed by chief of staff John Kelly, economic adviser Larry Kudlow and national security adviser John Bolton.
Donald Trump leaves the summit, followed by his chief of staff, John Kelly, economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, and national security adviser, John Bolton.
Photograph: Clemens Bilan/EPA

Trump also made lengthy complaints about other countries’ trade policies and doubled down on his claim that Russia should be reinstated to the G7, having been suspended in 2014 after its annexation of Crimea. Trump’s statement on Friday that the Putin regime should be readmitted sparked bipartisan scorn and rebuke from key US allies.

“I think it would be an asset to have Russia back in,” Trump told reporters on Saturday. “I think it would be good for the world, I think it would be good for Russia, I think it would be good for the United States, I think it would be good for all of the countries in the G7.”

Trump blamed Barack Obama for not doing enough to counter Russian aggression in Ukraine, stating: “Obama can say all he wants but he allowed Russia to take Crimea. I may have had a much different attitude.”

Obama condemned Russia’s actions and pursued sanctions against Moscow.

Trump also pushed back at suggestions that under his leadership, amid disputes regarding relations with Russia and international trade, the US was becoming isolated from its traditional allies.

“I would say the level of relationship is a 10,” he said, claiming “we have a great relationship” with the leaders of countries including Germany, France and Canada.

After a prompt from his economic adviser Larry Kudlow, the US president then left the summit.

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Former Potential Suspects In Alleged Jussie Smollett Attack Claim Attack Was Faked

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UPDATE: Smolletts’ attorneys released a statement countering the claims of the two brothers.

“As a victim of a hate crime who has cooperated with the police investigation, Jussie Smollett is angered and devastated by recent reports that the perpetrators are individuals he is familiar with. He has now been further victimized by claims attributed to these alleged perpetrators that Jussie played a role in his own attack. Nothing is further from the truth and anyone claiming otherwise is lying.

“One of these purported suspects was Jussie’s personal trainer who he hired to ready him physically for a music video. It is impossible to believe that this person could have played a role in the crime against Jussie or would falsely claim Jussie’s complicity.

“Jussie and his attorneys anticipate being further updated by the Chicago Police Department on the status of the investigation and will continue to cooperate. At the present time, Jussie and his attorneys have no inclination to respond to “unnamed” sources inside of the investigation, but will continue discussions through official channels.”

Chicago (CBS) — Two brothers who were questioned and released by Chicago police investigating the Jussie Smollett attack did play a role in the crime.

Sources say at least one of the brothers bought the rope used in the incident at Smollett’s request. The sources also say the “Empire” actor paid for the rope, which was purchased at the Crafty Beaver Hardware Store the weekend of Jan. 25.

The brothers were paid $3,500 before leaving for Nigeria and were promised an additional $500 upon their return.

They left for Nigeria later in the day on Jan. 29 after the attack.

The sources say plain red hats worn by the brothers were bought at an Uptown beauty supply store and that the attack was supposed to happen before Jan. 29.

Smollett claims two men attacked him in Streeterville early Jan. 29 as he was heading to his apartment. He said they yelled racial and homophobic slurs at him, poured a chemical on him and put a rope around his neck.

The brothers are now cooperating with police.

Since being released Friday night, the brothers have been staying in an undisclosed location.

Chicago police spokesperson Anthony Guglielmi said:

“We can confirm that the information received from the individuals questioned by police earlier in the Empire case has in fact shifted the trajectory of the investigation. We’ve reached out to the Empire cast member’s attorney to request a follow-up interview.”

Developing story, more to come…

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Colin Kaepernick Reaches Settlement With NFL Over Kneeling Protest Fallout

  • Colin Kaepernick, Eric Reid settle collusion grievance with NFL
  • Parties have resolved grievances subject to confidentiality pact

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Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article titled “Colin Kaepernick reaches settlement with NFL over kneeling protest fallout” was written by Bryan Armen Graham, for theguardian.com on Friday 15th February 2019 19.32 UTC

The NFL and attorneys for Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid jointly announced on Friday afternoon they have settled a complaint of collusion by the players, who claimed the league’s owners blackballed them because they had protested by kneeling during the pre-game playing of the national anthem.

“For the past several months, counsel for Mr Kaepernick and Mr Reid have engaged in an ongoing dialogue with representatives of the NFL,” the statement read. “As a result of those discussions, the parties have decided to resolve the pending grievances. The resolution of this matter is subject to a confidentiality agreement so there will be no further comment by any party.”

An arbitrator had been expected to rule over the next few weeks on Kaepernick’s grievance against the league, which he filed in 2017 under the collective bargaining agreement. The former San Francisco 49ers quarterback alleged the owners conspired to keep him off the field because of his protests to draw attention to racial inequality and social injustice issues.

The filing said the NFL and its owners “have colluded to deprive Mr Kaepernick of employment rights in retaliation for Mr Kaepernick’s leadership and advocacy for equality and social justice and his bringing awareness to peculiar institutions still undermining racial equality in the United States”.

The NFLPA released a statement on Friday in support of Kaepernick and Reid, acknowledging they did not know the terms of the agreement as the players employed outside counsel.

“We continuously supported Colin and Eric from the start of their protests, participated with their lawyers throughout their legal proceedings and were prepared to participate in the upcoming trial in pursuit of both truth and justice for what we believe the NFL and its clubs did to them,” the statement said. “We are glad that Eric has earned a job and a new contract, and we continue to hope that Colin gets his opportunity as well.”

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Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Returns To The High Court After Bout With Cancer

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WASHINGTON, Feb 15 (Reuters) – U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is back at the court after missing oral arguments in January as she recovered from lung cancer surgery at home, a court official said on Friday.

Ginsburg, who will turn 86 in March, had been working from home and participating and voting in cases since her December surgery by reading argument transcripts and case briefs. She attended the justices’ closed-door conference to discuss cases on Friday.

While Ginsburg was expected to attend the next session of oral arguments beginning on Feb. 19, court officials could not confirm she would be on the bench next week.

Last month, the court announced that Ginsburg’s recovery was on track and that there was “no evidence” of remaining disease.

Ginsburg, who joined the court in 1993, underwent a surgical procedure called a pulmonary lobectomy on Dec. 21 at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York to remove two cancerous nodules in her left lung. She was released from the hospital on Dec. 25.

Ginsburg missed oral arguments in January for the first time in her lengthy career on the court, fueling speculation about her ability to continue in the job. (Reporting by Andrew Chung; editing by Jonathan Oatis)

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