President Donald Trump said Monday his historic summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore could "work out very nicely" as officials from both countries met to narrow differences on how to end a nuclear stand-off on the Korean peninsula.
Arriving at the Prime Minister's office after 1900 local time, Kim shook hands with Lee and his staff then sat down to begin talks in front of the cameras before the press was ushered out a few minutes later.
Earlier on Sunday evening, Trump arrived at Singapore's Paya Lebar Air Base and is now staying at the Shangri-La Hotel. While Kim and his delegation are now staying at the St. Regis Hotel amid heavy security. It comes as officials are revealing more details about meeting - the first between a USA president and North Korean leader.
Similar scenes were seen on Sunday when Kim and Trump arrived in the city, and when Kim went to meet Lee.
But the two leaders also share some parallels.
He said complete denuclearization is the only acceptable outcome from Tuesday's meeting between the two leaders.
They discussed Singapore-North Korea relations and developments on the Korean peninsula amidst Kim thanking the Singaporean premier for hosting the summit.
The tests culminated in November's test of an intercontinental ballistic missile that North Korea said could reach the entirety of the United States.
Trump tells Singapore leader he can 'work things out nicely' with Kim
Mr Kim's itinerary was reported in detail, which is a rarity for the state's media, according to South Korea's Yonhap news agency. North Korea wants a staged approach to dismantling its nuclear weapons program and a security guarantee from the U.S. in return.
The leaders met at Lee's official residence the Istana, where Kim Jong-un sat down with Lee on Sunday. "There is a very wide gap between the US and North Korean negotiating positions, and finding common ground will require a sustained diplomatic process with high-level buy-in from Pyongyang and Washington", Daniel Wertz, associate director of the National Committee on North Korea, told Newsweek.
Trump acknowledged the difficulty of gleaning much information concerning Kim, who has scant experience on the worldwide stage and about whom foreign intelligence agencies have struggled to gather much beyond basic biographical data.
Kim may also be seeing the gamble in a light never considered by his autocratic father and grandfather because of "his determination to modernize North Korea", according to Ryan Haas, an Asia expert at the John L. Thornton China Center.
At the Quebec meeting of the leaders of seven industrial powers, Trump yanked the US endorsement of a joint economic agreement among the seven countries.
The top USA and North Korean negotiators had earlier emerged from a last-ditch meeting at the Ritz Carlton with pursed lips, and no sign of whether an attempt to narrow the gap between USA and North Korean expectations of what denuclearisation should look like, had worked. The US wants North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons, but North Korea is widely expected to resist that and it is unclear what it might ask for in return.
The Trump administration has promised not to seek to bring about regime change and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has even floated the possibility of issuing security guarantees to the North.
"The kind of counter-intuitive thing is, I think they are going to listen to each other", said Yonsei University professor John Delury.
It was reported that Kim planned to fly back to North Korea in the early afternoon on Thursday, leaving very little time for actual negotiations, although there is still considerable uncertainty about what a deal between the leaders would look like.
"The South can not simply afford to take care of the North economically", she said.