China sending envoy to North Korea


Song Tao, head of the Chinese Communist Party's International Liaison Department, will visit Pyongyang on Friday to brief North Korea officials about last month's party congress, according to the official Xinhua News Agency.

"North Korea is a rogue nation which has become a great threat and embarrassment to China, which is trying to help but with little success", the president said in September.

On Donald Trump's recent trip to South Korea, the USA president toned down his rhetoric and urged North Korea to come to the table and "make a deal". Trump has said that China should do more to rein in its wayward neighbor.

"President Xi of China has stated that he is upping the sanctions against #NoKo".

Song would be the first ministerial-level Chinese official to visit North Korea since October 2015 when Politburo Standing Committee member Liu Yunshan visited Pyongyang and met with Kim.

During his visit to Beijing, Mr Trump asked Mr Xi to "work very hard" on North Korea. China has implemented United Nations sanctions on North Korea over its nuclear and missile tests.

They also said that it seems to be part of China's efforts to mend ties with neighboring countries, including North Korea, but cautioned that it remains to be seen whether it will herald any "imminent breakthrough" in the current North Korean nuclear stalemate.

North Korea has not carried out any major provocations since September 15, raising expectations that the USA could seek direct talks with the North.

The Washington Post reported last week that the US North Korea envoy Joseph Yun had said if North Korea stopped firing missiles for 60 days, it would be a signal to resume direct dialogue.