US President Donald Trump; left, and Chinese President Xi Jinping. (AP Photo)US President Donald Trump favours China taking a greater role in putting maximum pressure on North Korea to curb its nuclear weapons programme, the White House has said, following Beijing’s decision to send a special envoy to Pyongyang.
Chinese President Xi Jinping’s special envoy Song Tao will visit North Korea today to inform its leadership about the outcome of the recent Congress of the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC).
Song is likely to convey a message from Xi to North Korea to join negotiations to halt its nuclear programme. He will also convey the contents of Xi’s discussions with Trump about North Korea, according to media reports.
Last week in Beijing, the talks between President Xi and Trump focused heavily on North Korea. After he left Beijing, Trump tweeted that he was impressed with China’s efforts to push for the denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula.
“The president certainly favours China taking a greater role in putting maximum pressure on North Korea,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters.
The Chinese envoy’s visit comes days after Trump’s completion of a five-nation tour of Asia, during which he urged Xi to do more to pressure North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un to give up nuclear weapons programme.
“Certainly, any effort in order to denuclearise the Peninsula there in North Korea, then China participating in that, the president certainly supports those efforts,” Sanders said.
Trump also took to Twitter to welcome China’s decision to send it envoy to North Korea. “China is sending an Envoy and Delegation to North Korea – A big move, we’ll see what happens!” Trump said Thursday.