State of the Union: Donald Trump announces second nuclear summit with North Korea's Kim Jong Un

US president Donald Trump has announced in his State of the Union speech that he will hold a two-day summit with North Korea leader Kim Jong Un in Vietnam later this month.

The talks will be held on February 27 and 28, with Mr Trump saying that the US would be in a "major war" with North Korea if he had not been elected.

The two met last summer in Singapore, though that meeting only led to a vaguely worded commitment by the North to denuclearise.

Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un met for the first time in Singapore last June Credit: AP
  • What else was in the speech?

In the wide-ranging address, Mr Trump called on Washington to reject “the politics of revenge, resistance and retribution” as he faced a divided Congress for the first time.

Mr Trump, who has spent two years levelling fiercely personal attacks on his Democratic rivals, declared that it was time “to bridge old divisions, heal old wounds, build new coalitions, forge new solutions and unlock the extraordinary promise of America’s future”.

He warned emboldened Democrats that “ridiculous partisan investigations” into his administration and businesses could hamper a surging American economy.

The president’s appeals for bipartisanship in his State of the Union address clashed with the rancorous atmosphere he has helped cultivate in the nation’s capital — as well as the desire of most Democrats to block his agenda during his next two years in office.

Their opposition was on vivid display as Democratic congresswomen in the audience formed a sea of white in a nod to early 20th-century suffragettes.

Mr Trump spoke at a critical moment in his presidency, staring down a two-year stretch that will determine whether he is re-elected or leaves office in defeat.

His speech sought to shore up Republican support that had eroded slightly during the recent government shutdown and previewed a fresh defence against Democrats as they ready a round of investigations into every aspect of his administration.

“If there is going to be peace and legislation, there cannot be war and investigation,” he declared. Politicians in the cavernous House chamber sat largely silent.

Looming over the president’s address was a fast-approaching February 15 deadline to fund the government and avoid another shutdown.

Democrats have refused to bow to his demands for a border wall, and Republicans are increasingly unwilling to shut down the government to help him fulfil his signature campaign pledge.

Donald Trump addressed issues such as immigration and the economy Credit: AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

Wary of publicly highlighting those divisions, Mr Trump made no mention of an emergency declaration in his remarks, though he did offer a lengthy defence of his call for a border wall. But he delivered no ultimatums about what it would take for him to sign legislation to keep the government open.

“I am asking you to defend our very dangerous southern border out of love and devotion to our fellow citizens and to our country,” he said.

Mr Trump devoted much of his speech to foreign policy, another area where Republicans have increasingly distanced themselves from the White House.

As he stood before politicians, the president was surrounded by symbols of his emboldened political opposition.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who was praised by Democrats for her hard-line negotiating during the shutdown, sat behind Mr Trump as he spoke. And several senators running for president were also in the audience, including Kamala Harris of California and Cory Booker of New Jersey.

Female members of Congress cheer after Mr Trump acknowledges more women in Congress Credit: AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

One bright spot for the president has been the economy, which has added jobs for 100 straight months. He said the US has “the hottest economy anywhere in the world.”

He said: “The only thing that can stop it are foolish wars, politics or ridiculous partisan investigations” – an apparent swipe at the special counsel investigation into ties between Russia and Trump’s 2016 campaign, as well as the upcoming congressional investigations.

Mr Trump also defended his decisions to withdraw US troops from Syria and Afghanistan.

First lady Melania Trump arrives the State of the Union address Credit: AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

“Great nations do not fight endless wars,” he said, adding that the US was working with allies to “destroy the remnants” of the Islamic State group and that he had “accelerated” efforts to reach a settlement in Afghanistan.

Mr Trump’s guests for the speech included Anna Marie Johnson, a woman whose life sentence for drug offences was commuted by the president, and Joshua Trump, a sixth-grade student from Wilmington, Delaware, who has been bullied over his last name. They sat with first lady Melania Trump during the address.

  • What was the Democrats' response to the speech?

Stacey Abrams delivered the Democratic response to the State of the Union address Credit: AP

Stacey Abrams accused US president Donald Trump and his fellow Republicans of abandoning working Americans and fomenting partisan and cultural discord as she delivered the Democratic response to the State of the Union address.

The Georgia Democrat introduced herself to the nation months after narrowly losing her bid to become America’s first black female governor.

Instead, she became the first black woman to deliver a State of the Union response.

Speaking from a union hall in Atlanta, Ms Abrams combined her party’s vision of a more unified society with her personal story as a black daughter of the Deep South.

“These were our family values: faith, service, education and responsibility,” she said, arguing for “this uncommon grace of community”.