Beijing confirmed Wednesday that Kim Jong-un had met with President Xi Jinping on a surprise four-day visit to China. The Chinese Xinhua news agency quoted Kim as saying during the visit: “The issue of denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula can be resolved, if South Korea and the United States respond to our efforts with goodwill, create an atmosphere of peace and stability while taking progressive and synchronous measures for the realization of peace.” A photo of the two presidents and their wives was released, during the North Korean leader’s first visit abroad since taking power in 2011. Pyongyang confirmed the meeting with Xi but did not mention denuclearization or the planned summit with Trump.
Xi said that China continues to push for denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and made four proposals to improve relations with North Korea, including maintaining frequent contact with Kim. Xi said China will continue to share friendship with North Korea as a “strategic choice” that “will not change because of any single event at a particular time,” in a statement that referred to the two leaders as “comrades.”
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement that China had contacted the US to brief it on Kim’s visit to Beijing.