Kim Jong-un leaves China with 'backing for second Trump summit'

Kim Jong-un leaves China with 'backing for second Trump summit'

Kim Jong-un leaves China with 'backing for second Trump summit'

Chinese President Xi Jinping accepted an offer to visit Pyongyang after meeting North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, North Korea's state media reported on Thursday.

Kim reportedly met Chinese President Xi Jinping during his trip, which may have been a precursor to a second summit between Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump. -North Korea summits and hopes the two sides 'will meet each other halfway'.

Kim said during his China visit this week that there is no change in North Korea's stance to faithfully carry out the agreement reached with US President Donald Trump during their Singapore summit, and pursue a peaceful resolution through discussion, KCNA said.

He said Beijing remains supportive of efforts to end tensions over USA demands for a halt to North Korea's nuclear and missile programs.

DPRK is the acronym for North Korea's official name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

Before Kim's first visit to China last March, the relationship between Kim and Xi was anything but warm - they kept each other at arm's length despite years of propaganda claiming the two countries were as close as "lips and teeth".

Tuesday was Kim's birthday but there was no word of any official celebration.

Kim's visit also takes place amid trade talks between Washington and Beijing.

"Considering the difficulties faced by South Korean businessmen of the Kaesong Industrial Park and the hopes of South Korean people who wish to visit our people's great mountain, we are willing to resume the Kaesong Industrial Park and the tours to Mount Diamond with no preconditions or strings attached", Kim stated.

Mr Moon said North Korea should take more concrete steps, such as abandoning its intercontinental and intermediate-range ballistic missiles and dismantling weapons production lines and other nuclear complexes, to secure USA concessions such as sanctions relief.

Kim's visit also marks the 70th anniversary of ties between Pyongyang and Beijing.

Mr. Kim could not be seen, but he was presumed to be on board the long train as it crossed on elevated tracks over a busy Beijing street and headed toward eastern China and the border with North Korea.

A second Kim-Trump meeting is expected soon, and the North Korean and Chinese leaders had far deeper security discussions this time in Beijing than in any of their talks previous year, pointed out Lim Eul-chul, professor of North Korean studies at Kyungnam University.

Speculation over possible locations has swirled among Korea-watchers, with the candidates including Hanoi in Communist-ruled Vietnam, Ulan Bator in Mongolia - which Kim can reach by train - Sweden, which has a long history of mediating between Pyongyang and Washington, and even the U.S. state of Hawaii.

"We will not loosen our guard until the promise to denuclearize the peninsula is kept and peace is fully institutionalized", Moon said.

While Kim was in China, Xi's government was in talks with a visiting US delegation over a trade war that has been extracting a financial cost on the world's two biggest economies.

There was a "rare historic opportunity" for a political settlement on the peninsula, Xi said according to Xinhua, and China "supports the DPRK and the United States holding summits and achieving results".

"The Sino-US trade negotiations are a matter between China and the US", he said.

Some analysts say China could use its cooperation on the North Korean issue as a bargaining chip in the U.S. trade talks.

Trump had yet to respond to Kim Jong-un's China trip but tweeted Tuesday: "Talks with China are going very well!"

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