Trump leaves Singapore claiming success after historic meeting with Kim Jong Un

Last Updated Jun 12, 2018 6:54 PM EDT

SINGAPORE -- A jubilant President Trump boarded Air Force One on Tuesday for Washington, leaving Singapore with what he said was an historic new relationship with North Korea and a commitment from dictator Kim Jung Un to eventually give up nuclear weapons.

In roughly five hours, the leaders shook hands at least eight different times, gestures that conveyed new friendliness while elevating secretive and repressive North Korea on the world stage.

"A lot of good will went into this. A lot of work," Mr. Trump said of the summit.

The two men signed a joint statement that called for better relations, peace between the two Koreas and denuclearization.

When Mr. Trump was asked about the joint statement and how it lacked verbiage about verifiable or reversible denuclearization, the president said it wasn't a concession on the part of the U.S.

"No, not at all," Mr. Trump said. "Because if you look at it, it said that we are going to -- let's see here -- it will be gone. I don't think it can be any more plain in what we're asking."

The president said inspectors will verify North Korean compliance and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will lead the negotiations over the details of the process to dismantle the weapons program.

"So Mike, our whole team has to get to work and get it completed," Mr. Trump said at a press briefing after the summit's conclusion. "If you don't the ball over the goal line, it doesn't mean enough, OK?"

Mr. Trump also announced an end to joint U.S.-South Korea military exercises, a goal long-sought by North Korea. The move surprised many at the Pentagon and in Seoul.

"We will be saving a tremendous amount of money. Plus, I think it's very provocative," Mr Trump mentioned.

The summit was a spectacle -- with Kim even comparing it to a science fiction movie.

And Mr. Trump showed Kim a video, showcasing a glowing new North Korean economic future.

The president said North Korea had beautiful beaches ready for condominium development.

"Think of it from a real estate perspective," Mr. Trump pointed out. "You have South Korea, you have China, and they own the land in the middle. How bad is that, right?"

Last year, the president called Kim -- with his abysmal human rights record -- wicked and depraved. Tuesday, he said he trusts the dynastic dictator -- after one face-to-face meeting.

"He's smart, loves his people, he loves his country. He wants a lot of good things, and that's why he's doing this," Mr. Trump said.

Mr. Trump mentioned an agreement to work to repatriate remains of prisoners of war and those missing in action from the Korea War. The president said this was something very important to him -- dating back to when he was a 2016 presidential candidate.

Trump, Kim -- U.S.-North Korea summit

President Trump (R) gives a thumbs up as he sits down with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (L) for their historic U.S.-North Korea summit at the Capella Hotel on Sentosa island in Singapore on Tue., June 12, 2018.

Getty