• Transcript, E&OE

JOURNALIST: Overnight Donald Trump has locked in his meeting with Kim Jong-un. What is Australia hoping will come out of that?

JULIE BISHOP: We are very pleased that a time, and date, and place has been set for an historic summit meeting between President Trump and Kim Jong-un. We hope that this will be a circuit-breaker from North Korea's illegal behaviour in developing a nuclear weapons and ballistic missile program in defiance of numerous United Nations Security Council resolutions. We hope that the summit will result in an agreed plan, whereby North Korea denuclearises - in other words, dismantles - its illegal nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs. We want to see peace on the Korean Peninsula, but a first step must be for North Korea to show genuine action in denuclearising.

JOURNALIST: When Kim Jong-un initially made these kind of positive steps, the Government was saying: "We have seen this before". You obviously don't want to get your hopes up. Are we now at a new point of further advancement in where we have been before?

JULIE BISHOP: Each step towards denuclearisation and peace on the Korean Peninsula is to be welcomed. We have to remain cautious because North Korea has in the past made many promises that it's failed to honour, but this is another positive step - a meeting between a United States President and a leader of North Korea is, of course, a significant event and we hope that it does lead to outcomes that will lead to peace on the Korean Peninsula.

JOURNALIST: Another major story in the past couple of days is the change of government in Malaysia. What does this mean for Australia?

JULIE BISHOP: Australia is very pleased that Malaysia has conducted an election that was peaceful, that was in accordance with its constitution, and that Dr Mahathir has been elected. We put out a press release this morning congratulating Dr Mahathir on his election. Malaysia is one of our closest friends in the region. It's our 10th largest trading partner. We work very closely together on countering terrorism, on border protection issues, and, of course, Malaysia is one of our partners in our quest to provide justice for the victims of the downing of Malaysian Airlines MH17. So, the Australia-Malaysia relationship is very close, and very broad, and we look forward to working with the new government.

JOURNALIST: This is the first change of government in Malaysia's history and the new President is in his 90s. Did the Australian Government anticipate this change or expect this change?

JULIE BISHOP: We have been following it very closely. In fact, our Ambassador met with Dr Mahathir in the lead-up to the election because we understood there could be an upset, an historic upset, with the change of government. So, as our diplomats always do, we made contact with both sides in a political contest so to ensure that whomever forms government at the behest of the people of that country, Australia is best positioned to work closely with that new government.

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