by WorldTribune Staff, May 8, 2018
North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un traveled to China for an unannounced meeting with China’s supreme leader, Xi Jinping on May 7-8.
It was Kim’s second visit to China and third trip abroad in as many months. The North Korean leader met South Korean President Moon Jae-In just south of the DMZ and is expected to meet with U.S. President Donald Trump this month or early next month.
South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo daily reported on May 8 that the Trump-Kim summit is likely to be hosted by Singapore next month.
Kim and Xi met at Dalian in northeast China’s Liaoning Province, where Chinese state broadcaster CCTV showed Xi and Kim taking a seaside stroll.
China watchers have noted anxiety in Beijing at being excluded from unexpected diplomatic breakthroughs with North Korea that typically have involved full Chinese participation.
Related: Overlooked China sent military plane into KADIZ one day after summit, May 1, 2018
“After the first meeting between me and Comrade Chairman (Kim), both China-DPRK relations and the Korean peninsula situation have made positive progress. I feel happy about it,” Xi said, according to China’s state-run Xinhua.
Kim was quoted as saying: “These are the positive outcomes of the historic meeting between me and Comrade General Secretary (Xi).”
Shortly after the meeting was made public, Trump tweeted that he would speak to his “friend” Xi about North Korea.
Xinhua said in its May 8 report that “Xi held talks with Kim and hosted a welcome banquet for him. Together, they also took a stroll and attended a luncheon. In a cordial and friendly atmosphere, the top leaders of the two parties and the two countries had an all-round and in-depth exchange of views on China-DPRK relations and major issues of common concern.”
The meeting was confirmed only after Kim returned to Pyongyang.
“The two leaders’ meaningful reunion took place at China’s city of Dalian amid the situation where a notable new era in the history of friendship between North Korea and China is unfolding,” the North’s state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported.
According to Chinese media, Kim said he had a “firm and clear” commitment to denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula, adding North Korea would not need nuclear weapons if “relevant countries” end their hostility and security threats toward his country.
Xi was quoted as stating he was “very satisfied” with positive developments in Sino-North Korean relations and on the Korean Peninsula since his meeting with Kim in March.