A hapless aide to Kim Jong Un appeared to botch his red-carpet entrance in Vietnam

  • North Korean leader Kim Jong Un arrived by train to Vietnam on Tuesday, though his grand red-carpet entrance took an unusual turn.
  • Kim descended the carpeted ramp alone, before a flustered aide realised, and ran to be by his side.
  • Kim is in Vietnam to meet with US President Donald Trump for a summit focused on the denuclearization of North Korea.
  • Officials and North Korea experts warn that North Korea is unlikely to give up its nuclear arms.

Kim Jong Un’s arrival in Vietnam for a second summit with President Donald Trump took an unusual turn when an aide appeared to miss his cue during a grand entrance.

Video footage of Kim’s arrival in Dong Dong, on the China-Vietnam border, shows the North Korean leader walking down a red carpet ramp from his personal armoured train.

He initially descends alone. A few seconds later, an aide appears to realise what is going on, and quickly runs down the ramp to join Kim.

You can the moment in this video, via the Filipino ABS-CBN news channel. The aide’s sprint down the carpet comes around the 14-second mark:

The entourage had just completed a marathon 2,000-mile train ride from Pyongyang, across a vast expanse of southern China, which lasted two and a half days.

Experts say that Kim’s decision to travel by train could have been to avoid the appearance of being reliant on China, after he received significant attention for borrowing plane from the government-owned Air China to get to his last summit with Trump in Singapore.


Read more:
Inside Kim Jong Un’s personal train – which is bulletproof, has all-white conference rooms, and its own red carpet ramp

The optics of Kim travelling by train could also remind North Koreans of Kim’s grandfather, who used the same train to get to countries like Vietnam as well as the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, The Associated Press reported.

Trump has characterised the summit as a follow-up to the leaders’ first summit in Singapore in June, when North Korea made a vague commitment to working toward denuclearization.

Pyongyang appears to have made little progress on that front since the first meeting. US intelligence and North Korea experts have warned that North Korea is unlikely to give up its nuclear arms.


Read more:


PHOTOS: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un arrives in Vietnam ahead of second nuclear summit with Trump

Trump told the Governors’ Ball on Sunday that he was “not pushing for speed” with North Korea’s denuclearization.

However, he tweeted on Monday: “With complete Denuclearization, North Korea will rapidly become an Economic Powerhouse. Without it, just more of the same. Chairman Kim will make a wise decision!”

Trump tweeted on Monday that he was “Looking forward to a very productive Summit!”

Trump is expected to arrive in Vietnam on Tuesday evening.

Read more coverage of Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un’s Vietnam summit:

Kim Jong Un took a laborious 2.5-day train ride to meet Trump in Vietnam, and it could be because he’s too embarrassed to borrow a plane from China

US news reporters were abruptly kicked out of Kim Jong Un’s hotel in Vietnam

A Vietnamese barbershop near Trump and Kim Jong Un’s next summit is offering free Trump- and Kim-style haircuts

From Spain to Canada, meet the superfans of North Korea who praise its ideology and supreme leader

Kim Jong Un reportedly told Pompeo that he didn’t want his children to live with the burden of nuclear weapons

An ex-North Korea diplomat says Kim Jong Un won’t ever give up nukes

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