Kim Jong-un of North Korea Fetes Chinese Envoy as Ties Warm

Kim Jong-un, Senior Chinese Official Discuss 'Important Matters'

According to the North's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on Sunday, Kim met Song Tao, head of the global liaison department at the Central Committee of the Communist Party, on Saturday.

Song is leading a Chinese art troupe that has been in North Korea since Friday. It, however, did not specify what the important matters were.

The warm welcome is in stark contrast to when Song was not permitted to meet Kim during a visit as the Chinese president's special envoy last November.

Kim's recent trip to China was interpreted as a move to rally support from the North's closest ally before his planned summit talks with South Korean and US leaders.

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South and North Korean leaders are preparing to hold their talks on the southern side of the truce village of Panmunjom on April 27.

Kim "expressed satisfaction with improving ties between the two parties and nations", the North Korean news agency said.

North Korea's official holidays range from the birthday of its leaders, to its Thanksgiving Day based on the lunar calendar.

Song reportedly responded by saying it is China's unshakable policy to consolidate and develop their relations.

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