November 16, 2017 12:28
Song Tao, the chief of the Chinese Communist Party's International Liaison Department, will visit North Korea on Friday as President Xi Jinping's special envoy, Xinhua reported Wednesday.
It is the first time in about two years that a Chinese special envoy has visited Pyongyang. The last was Liu Yunshan, then a member of the Politburo's Standing Committee, who visited to celebrate the North Korean Workers Party's anniversary in 2015.
Song is expected to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and deliver a personal letter from Xi.
The official purpose of the trip is to brief North Korean comrades on the 19th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party last month, according to Xinhua. It is customary for the party to send special envoys to socialist allies after the congress is finished.
Song has already visited Vietnam and Laos. But in reality he is expected to have substantive talks with North Korean officials on the North Korean nuclear issue.
His trip comes after Xi met U.S. President Donald Trump and South Korean President Moon Jae-in during the APEC summit in Danang, Vietnam.
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