May 28, 2018 11:54
A close aide to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has been spotted in China, raising speculation of another looming visit to Beijing by Kim.
Japanese media reported that Kim Chang-son, a senior official at North Korea's State Affairs Commission, was spotted entering the VIP lounge of Beijing Capital International Airport on Saturday afternoon before boarding a 2 p.m. flight to Pyongyang.
He was accompanied by Kim Song-nam, a China expert at the Workers Party, and the two stayed at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing.
Secrecy was tight. A Chinese government car was seen spiriting away a passenger who disembarked from an Air Koryo flight last Thursday, with airport staff using large umbrellas to cover the official.
Kim Chang-son reportedly screens all documents that are read by the North Korean leader.
Chinese railway authorities issued a notice of a halt in traffic in China's northeastern region between Monday and June 12. They said the measure was part of routine maintenance, but the same steps were taken when Kim Jong-un visited Beijing by train in March.
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