Kim Jong Un’s secret visit to China ahead of US-South Korean Dialogue?

A surprise visit by North Korean Supreme leader Kim Jong Un to Beijing may indicate Pyongyang’s need for support from its closest ally ahead of its upcoming summits with two of its arch-rivals touching the Pacific shores.

Observers say it would be highly unusual for Kim to meet US President Donald Trump without seeing Chinese President Xi Jinping first. Kim has never met a foreign leader since he took power in 2011, yet China is North Korea’s number one trading and economic partner and is Pyongyang’s only major military ally.
The circumstances surrounding the North Korean leader’s apparent trip to Beijing are murky, including which side initiated talks and what was discussed. Neither China nor North Korea has confirmed the trip, but an official with deep knowledge of North Korea told CNN that there was a strong possibility that Kim was in the Chinese capital.
A green armoured train was spotted at a train station in the Chinese capital Monday, accompanied by a large security presence, leading to speculation that Kim was in the city.
Kim and South Korean President Moon Jae-in are due to meet next month, and a proposed meeting with Trump is due to take place by May. Aidan Foster-Carter, an honorary senior research fellow at Leeds University, said it would have been almost unthinkable for Kim to meet with Moon and Trump having never met Xi Jinping, given the importance of the Sino-Korean alliance.

China and not Russia?

During the victory day parade in 2015, The supreme leader had been invited to attend the Victory Day celebrations in Moscow along with Western and Asian leaders, refused to attend the parade due to the security reasons and Russian unwillingness to provide him special security other than what other leaders were getting.

However, apart from Kim, many leaders declined to attend the festivities, laying bare continued tensions between Moscow and the West.

Russia and North Korea have tried to establish closer relations over the past year as Moscow needs North Korea’s cooperation to boost natural gas supplies to South Korea. Pyongyang is looking for the support of Russia, a veto-wielding member of the United Nations Security Council, to protect it from criticism over human rights abuses.

 

Looking at the current meeting, only the time will tell, how North Korea gets into the anti-west shoes with Russia.

 

Source: CNN, Sputnik
Akshat Verma

The Kootneeti Team - Asia Brief

 

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This report has been written by The Kootneeti Team. For any feedbacks/query reach Editor@thekootneeti.com

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