North Korean leader Kim Jong Un returned home on Tuesday after travelling two and a half days by train from Vietnam, where his high-stakes nuclear summit with President Donald Trump ended without any agreement.
The Kim-Trump summit broke down mainly because of disputes over the extent of sanctions relief the North could win in return for its nuclear disarmament steps.
Both Washington and Pyongyang blame each other for the summit’s breakdown, but neither side says they would pull out of diplomacy.
The crowd welcoming Kim at Pyongyang’s railway station gave shouts of joy and loud hurrahs upon his return, the Korean Central News Agency reported.
Kim received a salute from the head of the army’s honor guards and was presented with flowers from children. Senior officials also greeted Kim with “their ardent congratulations,” KCNA reported.
The report briefly mentioned Kim’s summit with Trump but didn’t say the meeting failed to produce any agreement.
The North’s main Rodong Sinmun newspaper previously reported that Kim and Trump had agreed to continue talks to resolve issues discussed in their Hanoi summit, but it also didn’t mention the lack of agreement in the summit.
Some observers say the North’s propaganda services won’t report about the summit’s collapse to prevent Kim from suffering any damage in his leadership at home.
After his summit with Trump, Kim had a two-day official visit to Vietnam that included a meeting with Vietnamese Nguyen Phu Trong and paying his respects at the embalmed body of national hero Ho Chi Minh.