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China’s President to Visit North Korea

Posted October. 22, 2005 10:48,   


China and North Korea announced on Friday that the Chinese president, Hu Jintao would pay a three-day visit to Pyongyang on October 28, accepting the invitation of North Korean leader Kim Jong Il.

He is the first Chinese leader to visit the hermit kingdom in four years and a month since Jang Zemin, the former Chinese president, visited the nation in September 2001. His visit signals that the fifth round of the six-party talks slated for early next month will kick off as scheduled.

China’s state news agency, Xinhua, quoted a spokesman for the International Liaison Department of the Chinese Communist Party on Friday as saying, “Hu Jintao, the general secretary of the Communist Party of the China Central Committee and president of the People’s Republic of China, will pay a friendly visit to North Korea from October 28 to 30, in response to an invitation from Kim Jong Il, the general secretary of the Korean Workers’ Party and chairman of the National Defense Committee.”

The two leaders will reconfirm the two nations’ strong ties as long-standing allies and discuss major issues, including the upcoming six-party talks, that will resume early next month.

Hu will also tour the Chinson glass factory in Daean, Pyongnam, which was constructed with the assistance of the Chinese government, and watch an Arirang performance.

One source from Beijing said that China planned his trip to ensure that the Chinese president pays a visit to the nation’s traditional ally, North Korea, before he attends the Korea-China summit on November 16 and the Busan APEC summit meeting on November 18 and 19.

In the meantime, New Mexico governor Bill Richardson announced on October 21 that North Korea made clear that it would attend the fifth round of the six-party talks unconditionally and that it would invite IAEA Director General, Mohamed ElBaradei, to discuss ways to resolve the nuclear standoff.

The governor visited Pyongyang for four days starting on October 17, and said in Tokyo, “North Korean officials reiterated repeatedly that the nation would rejoin the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), as agreed in the joint communiqué after the fourth round of the six-party talks.”

Yoo-Seong Hwang yshwang@donga.com parkwj@donga.com