Attention on Chinese Envoy's Possible Meeting with Kim Jong

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Song Tao, who heads the ruling Chinese Communist Party's global department, is visiting Pyongyang to discuss the outcome of the recently concluded Communist Party Congress in China, at which President Xi Jinping cemented his power.

Special representative Song Tao, the head of the ruling Communist Party's external affairs department, informed Mr Choe about China's 19th National Congress "in detail", and stressed China's stance to steadily develop the traditionally friendly relations between the two parties and countries, KCNA said.

"The two sides exchanged their views on such matters of mutual concern as the situation of the Korean Peninsula and region and bilateral relations", the North's official Korean Central News Agency said, without offering further details on Song's discussions with Ri Su Yong, a top North Korean foreign relations official.

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Analysts expect Song to address the nuclear standoff, which has roiled relations between the two Cold War-era allies as China has backed United Nations sanctions on North Korea over its missile tests and sixth nuclear blast.

After arriving, Mr Song met with Choe Ryong-hae, a vice chairman of the ruling party and one of the most senior leaders after Mr Kim.

The visit, whose length and content have not been specified in reports, is the first by a high-ranking Chinese official to North Korea in more than a year. It is still unclear whether Song will hold direct talks with Kim during this trip.

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Mr Song's trip comes just a week after Donald Trump visited Beijing as part of an Asia tour.

Trump, who warned Xi during his trip to Beijing last week that time was "quickly running out" to solve the nuclear crisis, took to Twitter on Thursday to hail the mission as "a big move, we'll see what happens!".

The unconventional getaway, Songdowon Children's Camp, used to be a cheap place for kids from other communist countries to enjoy their summers, but now it has been repurposed to indoctrinate North Korea's most promising youngsters with a violent anti-American agenda. "If both sides insist on their own logic and refuse to move in the same direction, even if Song opens a door for talks, the door could be closed anytime".

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During his visit, Song was widely expected to try to ease the standoff over North Korea's nuclear weapons and missile programs. "Perhaps the lowest point since the Korean War", she said.

China has previously pushed for a diplomatic solution to the crisis over North Korea; however, Pyongyang has so far ignored Beijing's calls to end its nuclear and ballistic missile programs and return to the negotiating table.

China sent an envoy to North Korea after each of the past two party congresses, in 2007 and 2012.

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