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High-Ranking Chinese Officials Continue to Visit North Korea

High-Ranking Chinese Officials Continue to Visit North Korea

Posted August. 30, 2004 21:59,   


High-ranking Chinese officials continue to visit North Korea amid expectations that the fourth round of six-way talks to solve the North Korean nuclear issue will not be held until after the U.S. presidential election.

After the Vice Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People`s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) Li Zhaozhuo arrived at Pyongyang leading a delegation of the CPPCC on August 28, a standing committee member of the politburo, Li Changchun, will visit North Korea for three days starting September 10.

The North`s state-run news agency KCNA did not clarify the purpose of the visits while reporting Vice Chairman Li’s visit. But his visit draws attention because it follows the visit by the chairman of the CPPCC, Jia Qinglin, who is the fourth most powerful politician in China.

It is expected that Vice Chairman Li will mainly discuss the matter of six-party talks during the visit.

It is reported that Li, a member of a standing committee in charge of ideology and propaganda, will meet the head of North Korea, Kim Jong-il, during his visit.

China has had played the role of a mediator, carrying out pressure and persuasion on North Korea in order to hold the six-way talks.

In addition, it interests people whether their visits may be ones of condolences for Kim Jong-il’s wife, Ko Young-hee, who reportedly died on August 13.

Yoo-Seong Hwang yshwang@donga.com