Tuesday morning news: June 12, 2018

Historic meeting of Trump, Kim Jong Un » AUDIO: Trump-Kim handshake 

Cameras clicking in Singapore as President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un made history, meeting face to face for the first time. The two leaders shook hands just after 9 p.m. Eastern Time last night—or 9 a.m. this morning local time.

TRUMP: I feel really great. We’re gonna have a great discussion, and I think, tremendous success. It’ll be tremendously successful. 

The president addressing reporters at the start of the summit. It was the first time any U.S. president has ever met with a leader of North Korea. For his part Kim Jong Un also expressed optimism.

AUDIO: Kim Jong Un in Korean

Kim said we overcame the obstacles on our way forward and we are here today.

President Trump said last week that today’s meeting would be just the first step in an ongoing process. The Trump administration says it will not waiver on its objective to achieve a denuclearized Korean Peninsula.   

The president departs Singapore this morning, stopping in Guam and Hawaii before returning to the White House tomorrow.

Trump G7 spat » Meantime, the president isn’t backing down from quarrels with several U.S. allies over trade. WORLD Radio’s Kristen Flavin has more.

KRISTEN FLAVIN, REPORTER: The president has struck a defiant tone on Twitter this week, saying,  “we cannot let our friends, or enemies, take advantage of us on Trade anymore.”

That remark followed a series of tense meetings with trade partners at the G7 summit in Quebec. Canada and some European Union nations have criticized Trump’s decision to slap tariffs on steel and aluminum.

Firing back at Canada, the president said, “Fair Trade is now to be called Fool Trade if it is not Reciprocal,” adding, “According to a Canada release, they make almost 100 Billion Dollars in Trade with U.S.”

Canada has vowed to retaliate against U.S. tariffs.

And responding to one critical European ally, Trump said—quote—“Germany pays 1% (slowly) of GDP towards NATO, while we pay 4% of a MUCH larger GDP.”  He said, “Change is coming!”

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Kristen Flavin.

Sessions tightening standards for immigration claims » Attorney General Jeff Sessions is tightening requirements for asylum claims. He said Monday that being the victim of domestic violence is not a valid reason to claim asylum in the U.S.

Sessions overruled a decision by a Justice Department immigration appeals court, which granted asylum to a woman from El Salvador who was abused by her husband.

The guidance could affect tens of thousands of Central Americans, including those who have fled gang violence in recent years. Sessions said asylum claims should be based on government oppression.

He added—quote—“Asylum was never meant to alleviate all problems, even serious problems, that people face every day all over the world.”

Earlier in the day, Sessions told immigration judges in Washington, D.C. they play a critical role in securing the border.

SESSIONS: You have an obligation obligation to decide cases efficiently and to keep our federal laws functioning effectively, fairly and consistently.

The U.S. has a ballooning backlog of more than 700,000 immigration cases.

Russians penalized for cyberattacks » The U.S. Treasury Department has sanctioned five Russian firms and three executives for cyberattacks and digital spying. WORLD Radio’s Paul Butler has that story.

PAUL BUTLER, REPORTER: The Treasury Department said the companies played a role in the NotPetya ransomware attack that targeted computers in Ukraine last year and spread worldwide.

Officials said the Russians also tried to hack the U.S. energy grid and the global network infrastructure. That includes undersea cables carrying the bulk of the world’s telecommunications data.

The sanctions freeze the companies’ U.S. assets and bar Americans from doing business with them. The penalties affect a firm called Digital Security and its subsidiaries.

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Paul Butler.

Colorado Wildfire » AUDIO: Sound of helicopter

Fire crews in Colorado are dropping water and fire retardant by helicopter as they battle a wildfire north of Durango. The “4-16” fire doubled in size over the weekend. Residents of more than 2,000 homes have been forced to evacuate.

Jeff Ogorlek, who owns a business in Durango, says even if the fire doesn’t reach his door, it’s still turning life upside down.

OGERLEK: It’s scary for the fact of we don’t know how long it’s gonna last.

That courtesy of KMGH Denver 7.

The fire started June 1st in the San Juan National Forest in southwest Colorado. Officials do not yet know the cause of the fire … but it comes amid a severe drought in the Four Corners area where Colorado meets Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah.

I’m Kent Covington. Straight ahead: While the world focuses on North Korea’s nuclear program, Open Doors CEO David Curry is here to discuss another pressing issue: the plight of North Korean Christians. This is The World and Everything in It.

(AP Photo/Wong Maye-E) A car, right, carrying United States President Donald Trump enters Sentosa island where the summit between him and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will take place at the Capella Hotel on Tuesday, June 12, 2018, in Sentosa, Singapore. 

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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