The awkward moment Trump and a North Korean general tried to salute and shake hands at the same time at Singapore summit

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June 14, 2018

  • North Korean television has broadcast its first footage of the summit with Trump
  • Cameras captured awkward moment between Trump and North Korean general
  • President goes to shake the general’s hand but is greeted with a salute instead
  • Trump then salutes the general in a breach of protocol before pair clasp hands 
  • Video also shows Kim relaxing in his hotel and taking a tour around Singapore 

Donald Trump has been caught on camera saluting a North Korean general during his summit with Kim Jong-un in Singapore this week.

The President was being introduced to senior members of North Korea‘s delegation when he went to shake the hand of the general, who saluted him instead.

Trump then raises his hand in salute as the general drops his for a shake, before the pair eventually get on the same page and clasp hands.

Saluting a general from a hostile nation is a breach of protocol for a US President.

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Donald Trump was filmed by North Korean state TV being caught in an awkward moment with one of the country's top generals in Singapore

Donald Trump was filmed by North Korean state TV being caught in an awkward moment with one of the country’s top generals in Singapore

Trump goes to shake the man's hand but the general, who appears to be chief of the general staff Ri Yong-gil, salutes instead

Trump goes to shake the man’s hand but the general, who appears to be chief of the general staff Ri Yong-gil, salutes instead

Trump then returns the salute in a breach of protocol, since North Korea is a hostile nation

Trump then returns the salute in a breach of protocol, since North Korea is a hostile nation

The US Army Officer’s Guide recommends saluting ‘officers of friendly foreign nations when recognized as such’.

The general in question appears to be Ri Yong-gil, who was previously reported to have been executed by Kim, but last week was promoted to chief of the general staff.

Others meeting Trump included Ri Yong-ho, Kim’s foreign minister, and Ri Su-yong, vice chairman and director of North Korea’sInternational Affairs Department

The footage was captured by state-owned Korean Central Television cameras and broadcast for audience inside North Korea on Thursday.

It is the first time North Koreans have seen footage of the meeting between Trump and Kim, though images were previously published by newspaper Rodong Sinmun.

Kim Jong-un is also shown relaxing in his hotel in footage that was broadcast on state-owned Korean Central Television on Thursday

Kim Jong-un is also shown relaxing in his hotel in footage that was broadcast on state-owned Korean Central Television on Thursday

Kim stayed at the St Regis hotel in Singapore in what is believed to have been the Presidential suite on the top floor

Kim stayed at the St Regis hotel in Singapore in what is believed to have been the Presidential suite on the top floor

Previously unseen scenes of the dictator on the roof of the Marina Bay Sands hotel were also shown to audiences in Korea

Previously unseen scenes of the dictator on the roof of the Marina Bay Sands hotel were also shown to audiences in Korea

The footage included shots of the hotel pool and the Singapore skyline. For most North Koreans it will be their first glimpse of a major world city

The footage included shots of the hotel pool and the Singapore skyline. For most North Koreans it will be their first glimpse of a major world city

Kim was accompanied on his tour by Singapore's foreign minister Vivian Balakrishnan, who is pictured to the dictator's left here

Kim was accompanied on his tour by Singapore’s foreign minister Vivian Balakrishnan, who is pictured to the dictator’s left here

The broadcast, which was narrated by Kim’s favored news presenter Ri Chun-hee, also included footage of the dictator relaxing inside his hotel and taking a tour of Singapore.

One particularly striking moment shows Kim on top of the Marina Bay Sands hotel looking over the city at night while people swim in the pool nearby.

For most ordinary North Koreans, that clip will likely be the first time they have seen a foreign city.

Ri heaped praise on Kim during her narration, saying he was welcomed with ‘deep respect and boundless enthusiasm’ in the city-state.

‘Singapore, a beautiful and developed city, has become all the more famous because of the meeting of the century’, the female voiceover reported.

‘The streets were crowded with wellwishers who were full of reverence for Chairman Kim, who has come to lead world politics with his extraordinary political acumen’, she said.

North Korean TV said that Trump 'expressed respect and endless admiration for Chairman Kim'

North Korean TV said that Trump ‘expressed respect and endless admiration for Chairman Kim’

Kim was also shown flying to the summit on board a jet that was provided by Air China

Kim was also shown flying to the summit on board a jet that was provided by Air China

Jubilant crowds were filmed welcoming Kim back to North Korea following the summit

Jubilant crowds were filmed welcoming Kim back to North Korea following the summit

Kim was ‘warmly welcomed’ by crowds ‘wherever he appeared’, according to the voiceover, as the footage cut to a scene of Kim strolling through the Gardens by the Bay accompanied by Singaporean Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan, as crowds strained to take smartphone pictures.

‘The meeting of the century awaited by the whole world finally took place’ on Tuesday, the voiceover said to shots of Kim’s long motorcade en route to the summit venue on Sentosa island.

‘Who could have imagined that the two leaders meet and take a big first step toward reconciliation?’

The footage showcased scenes spanning the hugely-anticipated day, including Kim and Trump’s first handshake in front of their national flags.

The broadcast also showed the pair sitting down for talks, sharing a working lunch, signing a joint statement and Trump showing Kim his armoured limousine, nicknamed the ‘Beast’.

‘President Trump showed Chairman Kim his Beast and expressed respect and endless admiration for Chairman Kim’, it said.

Trump says Kim Jong-Un is a ‘very talented man’ who loves his country

Ri Chun-hee, Kim's favourite news broadcaster, narrated the footage - describing the moment the dictator met Trump as 'the meeting of the century'

Ri Chun-hee, Kim’s favourite news broadcaster, narrated the footage – describing the moment the dictator met Trump as ‘the meeting of the century’

'Who could have imagined that the two leaders meet and take a big first step toward reconciliation,' Ri said in her narration

‘Who could have imagined that the two leaders meet and take a big first step toward reconciliation,’ Ri said in her narration

The film described Kim as being 'revered by all the people under the heaven'

The film described Kim as being ‘revered by all the people under the heaven’

The video ended with Kim returning home to a red carpet hero’s welcome, complete with honour guards and crowds of hysterical wellwishers cheering and waving flags at Pyongyang airport.

‘The whole country heartily welcomed home the prominent world leader, revered by all the people under the heaven’, it concluded.

North Korea’s tightly controlled state media has enthusiastically reported the summit as a great achievement for the country, which remains isolated and heavily sanctioned.

The official KCNA news agency ran a glowing dispatch, describing it as an ‘epoch-making meeting’ that would help foster ‘a radical switchover in the most hostile (North Korea)-US relations’.

And the North’s ruling Workers Party official daily Rodong Sinmun splashed no fewer than 33 pictures across four of its usual six pages.

In Pyongyang, commuters crowded round the spread of images, for most of them the first they had seen of the summit.

President Trump, Kim Jong-un sign historic agreement

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