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Trump departs for summit in Singapore, skipping G-7 environmental sessions

Five things to watch for ahead of the historic U.S.-North Korea summit

President Trump left Canada Saturday, skipping several sessions at the G-7 summit on topics including energy, the environment and our oceans. He is now headed to Singapore ahead of the planned, upcoming summit there with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Mr. Trump arrived late to the G-7 summit in Canada and left early, and he blasted allied nations over trade before departing for what he said is a "one-time shot" for Kim. Instead of attending the morning sessions in Canada, Mr. Trump held a press conference with reporters and got an early start on his Singapore trip. 

Mr. Trump's absence from all official meetings on the environment comes after he announced the U.S. would withdraw from the Paris climate agreement. But those sessions aren't all the president missed Saturday — he also missed a session on the economy, among other small get togethers. The summit doesn't end until late Saturday afternoon.

Mr. Trump also left Canada before signing the world leaders' joint communique from the summit, but Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau confirmed later in the day that he had. The communique is a document world leaders traditionally sign after such a gathering to describe their accomplishments and shared mission.

The G-7 summit took place amid tensions over trade disputes with the European Union, Canada and other nations, as the U.S. looks to impose steel and aluminum tariffs.

During a press conference with reporters Saturday, Mr. Trump rated his relationship with some world leaders at the summit, such as German Chancellor Angela Merkel, as a "10." However, French President Emmanuel Macron suggested Friday in a tweet that the G-7 nations could work as six nations, excluding the U.S., if necessary. 

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Steffen Seibert, Germany spokesman, via Twitter

"At the top of the list was the issue of trade, very important subject because the Untied States has been taken advantage of for decades and decades and we can't do that anymore," Mr. Trump told reporters Saturday.

Air Force One was rolling for Singapore at noon. Singapore is 12 hours ahead of the East Coast. White House officials spotted accompanying the president on the plane included chief of staff John Kelly, national security adviser John Bolton and adviser Stephen Miller. 

According to South Korean news agency Yonhap, Kim is expected to arrive in Singapore on Sunday, although their meeting isn't slated to take place until Tuesday at the Capella Hotel

Trump G7 Summit
President Donald Trump boards Air Force One for a trip to Singapore to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, Saturday, June 9, 2018, at Canadian Forces Base Bagotville, in Canada. Evan Vucci/AP

Mr. Trump says this is Kim's "one-time shot" to make North Korea "great" and reach a deal, although the president has also said he thinks it will take more than just one meeting. Mr. Trump said this summit is something that "has probably rarely been done."

"It's unknown territory in the truest sense," He told reporters Saturday. "But I really feel confident I fell that Kim Jong Un wants to do something great for his people. And he has that opportunity and he won't have that opportunity again it's never going to be there again. So I really believe that he's going to do something very positive for his people, for himself, his family."

"He's got an opportunity the likes of which I think almost — if you look into history — very few people have ever had," Mr. Trump said. "He can take that nation with those great people and truly make it great so it's a one-time it's a one-time shot and I think it's going to work out very well. That's why I feel positive because it makes so much sense, and we will watch over and we will protect and we will do a lot of things."