Despite not being formally invited by President Donald Trump or the White House, former basketball player Dennis Rodman arrived in Singapore on Monday and hours before the U.S.-North Korea summit, broke down in tears during an interview on CNN, as he described the significance of the historic moment between the two world leaders that was about to take place.

Rodman made headlines back in 2013 when he visited North Korea twice in the same year, becoming one of the first Americans to meet with the nation’s leader Kim Jong Un. After calling Kim a “friend for life,” he wrote a letter to him asking for the release of American prisoner Kenneth Bae who had been sentenced to 15 years of hard labor in North Korea. Although Bae was released the following year, Rodman’s favorable comments about Kim did not go down well with the people of his own country, as he recalled in the interview.

“I said to everybody, the door will open,” Rodman said, emotionally. “It’s amazing, it’s amazing, it’s amazing, when I said those things, when I went back home, I got so many death threats, and I believed in North Korea, and I couldn’t go home, I couldn’t even go home, I had to hide out for 30 days, but I kept my head high, and I knew things were going to change…No more hatred. I don’t see the politics of this whole situation.”

His affection for Kim was clear in his statements as he insisted that the North Korean leader was not a “dumb man” and that he loved his countrymen and wanted them to have a good life. He also added that Kim would love to visit the United States some day and that he allegedly understood English when the both of them had conversations about basketball in the past.

Weirdly enough, however, Rodman kept on evading CNN host Chris Cuomo’s question whether Kim could speak English. Every time he was directed this question, he cut off Cuomo, saying things like “He’s (Kim’s) a big kid,” and “It’s a great day. I am here to see it. I’m so happy.”

Rodman has made no secret of the fact that he is a loyal Trump supporter, something that he also stressed on through his choice of attire — a “Make America Great Again” cap and his statements during the interview.

“Donald Trump reached out, he called his secretary, she called me and said ‘Donald Trump is so proud of you, he likes you a lot.’ And that means a lot. I don’t want to take any credit, we can all take credit and I’m just so glad this is happening,” he said. He drew a stark comparison with former President Barack Obama’s policy regarding North Korea, which according to him was disappointing.

“Obama didn’t even give me the time of day. ‘I have something to say from North Korea,’” Rodman said. “He brushed me off. That didn’t deter me. I kept going back.”

Dennis Rodman Retired American professional basketball player Dennis Rodman speaks to the press as he arrives at Changi International airport ahead of the US-North Korea summit in Singapore on June 11, 2018. Photo: Getty Images/ ADEK BERRY

Lastly, Rodman explained why he decided to fly to Singapore for the summit. Although Rodman did not expect Kim to meet him this time around because the North Korean leader “has bigger things to worry about than seeing me right now,” he added that he was just happy being able to witness the much-anticipated moment.

“I’m out there for the next three days as I didn’t want to miss such a historic event. I’m one of a few people on the planet friends with President Trump and Marshall Kim Jong-un. I know President Trump is the best negotiator in the world and looking forward to a historic outcome for the world,” he said.