Ottawa Korean community hopeful of meeting between Trump and Kim

Koreans around the world including those here in Ottawa are following the outcome of the summit closely.

They say it's a good step towards world peace but hope it's a lasting step as well.

About 3000 Koreans call Ottawa home.

Their country of birth has a lot riding on the continued success of the North Korea summit but then again, so does the world.

The Korean restaurant on Bank Street is still a go-to stop for lunch for Lee Sangmin.  Though she hasn't lived in Korea for a few years,   it's always top of mind, especially now. 

“It's a big start, it's a great big start,” says Lee of the meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un.

“It's only the beginning but we will see,” she adds, “We have to be patient. So that's what I think.”

“My concern is that Donald Trump will give away the store in pursuit of a Nobel Prize,” says Elliot Tepper, a Distinguished Senior Fellow Political Science at Carleton University.

Tepper is an expert in Asian studies and says while there are many unknowns about the deal and uncertainties about what concessions Trump may make, one thing is certain.

“The world has been moved back from the edge of nuclear abyss,” he says.

Bob Hahn is the former president of the Ottawa Korean Community Association. He says he is worried that North Korea has been down this path before, other promises made, but he hopes this time, it'll be different.

“We're hoping a young leader like Kim Jong Un will react differently than his father and grandfather in the past,” he says.

They are thoughts that were echoed by folks from all over the world, visiting Ottawa today.

“I think it's a good thing because it will improve the world peace,” says Hansen Chan from Hong Kong.

“I'm not so sure whether kim will keep the promise,” adds Gary Tong, also from Hong Kong, “as well as Trump, he likes to break rules, right?”

Brian Djuric is from Ottawa, showing visitors from Serbia, “It's a historic meeting and I hope something good comes out of that meeting.”

While some credit Donald Trump for success with this summit, Elliot Tepper points out that Trump did bring us to the brink of conflict this may not be an achievement you want to brag about.