Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan flies to Pyongyang as part of preparations for Trump-Kim summit

Singapore's Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan (pictured) is expected to meet his North Korean counterpart Ri Yong Ho and pay a courtesy call to Mr Kim Yong Nam, the ceremonial leader of the state.
Singapore's Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan (pictured) is expected to meet his North Korean counterpart Ri Yong Ho and pay a courtesy call to Mr Kim Yong Nam, the ceremonial leader of the state.PHOTO: EPA-EFE

BEIJING - Singapore's Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan flew to Pyongyang on Thursday (June 7) to prepare for a highly anticipated summit between United States President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, which will take place next week in Singapore, the Yonhap news agency reported.

Dr Balakrishnan met his North Korean counterpart Ri Yong Ho and is expected to pay a courtesy call to Mr Kim Yong Nam, the ceremonial leader of the state.

The minister, who was sighted in Beijing boarding an Air Koryo flight bound for Pyongyang, had just wrapped up his one-day Washington visit on Tuesday ( June 5).

Before leaving the US capital, he told Singapore media that hosting the summit on June 12 was "our contribution to world peace".

"I am confident we will do our best as hosts. I tell both the North Koreans and the Americans, we are there to serve tea and coffee," he quipped.

Yonhap reported that Dr Balakrishnan is likely to discuss security and protocol arrangements for the summit which will be held at the Capella Hotel on Singapore's Sentosa resort island.

Dr Balakrishnan will stay in Pyongyang until Friday (June 8).