Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday responded to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's congratulatory message by expressing his hope for development in China-North Korea relations.
"I wish that under the new situation, the Chinese side would make efforts with the [North Korean] side to promote relations between the two parties and the two countries to sustainable soundness and stable development and thus make a positive contribution to... defending regional peace and stability and common prosperity," Xi wrote in the message, according to the official [North] Korean Central News Agency.
No stories about the message appeared in the Chinese state media.
According to KCNA, Xi thanked Kim for his message and referred him as "comrade." The word "friendship" was conspicuously absent.