Published: Fri, November 17, 2017
Global Media | By Garry Long

China will send a high-level diplomatic envoy to North Korea

China will send a high-level diplomatic envoy to North Korea

At a regular briefing on Wednesday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said only that Song intends to debrief North Korean leaders on the congress. The goal of the trip was to discuss trade and efforts to halt North Korea's nuclear ambitions.

The White House says President Donald Trump will announce his decision on whether to name North Korea as a state sponsor of terrorism "in the first part of next week". He urged Xi to "work on it very hard". Yet China-North Korea relations have deteriorated in recent months.

China will dispatch a top-level diplomat to North Korea following US President Donald Trump's visit to Beijing last week.

During his tour, Trump had urged the global community to unite and put pressure on Pyongyang to halt its nuclear missile programme.

Some North Korea watchers suggest China, which while agreeing to sanctions has consistently stressed the need for engagement and dialogue, might be mulling the possibility of a summit with Kim, who has yet to travel overseas or meet a foreign head of state since assuming power in late 2011.

It is not clear how long Song could stay, but he has already visited Vietnam and Laos to inform them of the results of the congress, a courtesy China typically extends to other communist countries after such meetings.

President Donald Trump addresses his five-country swing through Asia on his first day back at the White House on Wednesday
President Donald Trump addresses his five-country swing through Asia on his first day back at the White House on Wednesday

It is customary for the party to send special envoys to socialist allies after the congress is finished. So flashy breakthroughs on that front aren't likely.

President Donald Trump has lunch with USA and South Korean troops along with South Korean President Moon Jae-in at Camp Humphreys in Pyeongtaek, South Korea.

The newspaper also took aim at the President for canceling his surprise visit to North Korea's Demilitarized Zone due to poor weather conditions.

Over the summer, Trump warned the reclusive nation it would be met "fire and fury like the world has never seen" if it continued to threaten the U.S. Responding to Trump's statement, former Central Intelligence Agency analyst Bruce Klingner said, "It seems to be language written by the same speechwriters for Kim Jong Un". The report in Xinhua news agency, however, gave no further details about Song's upcoming trip to Pyongyang.

North Korea's state newspaper called President Donald Trump a "hideous criminal sentenced to death". "He should know that he is just a ugly criminal sentenced to death by the Korean people", the North Korean daily reported.

What Song returns with may hinge on how he can negotiate that minefield of tough talk.

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