North Korea committed to denuclearization, Kim says

Glen Norman
May 9, 2018

It said the West's viewpoint that China was afraid of getting sidelined in the diplomatic parleys that are being conducted between North Korea, South Korea and the U.S. was "misleading" since China had a fundamentally indispensable role in achieving peace in the peninsula.

For his part, Kim could be trying to improve ties with Xi - which have been frosty, to put it mildly - in case his outreach to Trump falls flat, analysts say.

Kim visited Dalian on Monday and Tuesday, Xinhua reported on Tuesday night (Wednesday NZT).

North Korea's state media reported that Kim travelled to Dalian via a special plane and was accompanied by his sister Kim Yo-jong and Ri Su-yong, a vice party chairman on global affairs.

While Trump said it would be a "great thing" if the three American detainees were freed, Pompeo, speaking to reporters en route to Pyongyang, said he had not received a commitment for their release but hoped North Korea would "do the right thing".

North Korean state media said Kim was "very pleased" that the relationship with China was reaching a high point, and North Korea would cooperate with China more actively as the situation on the Korean peninsula changed. Also like last time, social media was abuzz with rumors of Kim's visit before any official confirmation.


After Trump accepted Kim's offer to meet, Beijing quickly followed up by having Kim visit Xi.

"Media abounded with pessimistic takes such as "Optimism About Korea Will Kill Us All: "The First Step Towards Peace Is Lowering Expectations" (Foreign Policy, 4/20/18), "Kim Jong Un Is Masterfully Playing Trump's Game" (Bloomberg, 5/3/18), "North Korea's Warm-and Fuzzy-Peace Summit" (Daily Beast, 4/27/18) and "'Don't Pop the Champagne Yet': "Experts Take on the Inter-Korea Summit" (Washington Examiner, 4/28/18), all of which echoed the conventional wisdom that we have gone through this before, and there was little new or plausible in the peace agreement.

"Plans are being made, relationships are building", Trump said of the planned summit during remarks at the White House that were otherwise focused on his decision to pull the United States out of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

On may 7-8, the General Secretary of the Communist party of China, the President of the PRC XI Jinping met with North Korean leader Kim Jong-UN, Chairman of the Labor party in the Chinese city of Dalian.

The top leaders of China and North Korea have had a second meeting, close on the heels of their first summit from March 25-28.

China is North Korea's only major ally, although trade between them has plummeted in recent months as Beijing enforces United Nations economic sanctions in response to the North's nuclear and ballistic missile tests.


Japan and North Korea should begin talks to normalise relations between the two countries and contribute to peace and stability in the region, South Korean President Moon Jae-in told a Japanese newspaper on Tuesday.

China has been eager to assert its importance in the process of lowering tensions on the Korean Peninsula.

The North Korean official flew in a private plane and arrived at Dalian airport on Monday amid heavy security, Yonhap said.

Dalian was also the site of a 2010 meeting between Mr. Kim's father, Kim Jong-il, and Mr. Li, who is now China's premier.

Speculation had been swirling online earlier Tuesday of a mystery visitor to the northern Chinese province, including reports of a North Korean plane touching down.


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