China's Xi vows to improve ties with North Korea

By Maimaitiming Yilixiati

ANKARA (AA) – Chinese President Xi Jinping has vowed to improve decades-long relations with North Korea and to promote regional peace and stability, local state media said.

Xi made the remarks in an article published in North Korea’s state-run Rondong Sinmun newspaper, on the eve of his state visit to Pyongyang, according to China’s Xinhua news agency.

The Chinese president noted that this year will mark the 70th anniversary of the establishment of bilateral diplomatic relations.

“At this historical moment, at the invitation of Kim Jong Un […] I will pay a state visit to the DPRK [Democratic People’s Republic of Korea] with good wishes of carrying forward our friendship and writing a new chapter of our relations," Xi said.

The Chinese president said that his government will continue to strengthen ties with North Korea “no matter how the international situation changes”.

“We are pleased to see that with Chairman Kim's correct decision and the concerted efforts of all parties concerned, the general trend of peaceful dialogue on the Korean Peninsula has taken shape, and a political settlement to the Peninsula issue sees a rare historical opportunity, which has been universally recognized and anticipated by the international community," Xinhua quoted Xi as saying in the article.

China is ready to join hands with Pyongyang to realize lasting regional peace and stability, the president added.

For securing regional peace and stability, Xi said, two sides need to deepen communication and cooperation.

"It fits our respective need for development and the common interests of our peoples to push forward the political settlement of the Korean Peninsula issue and maintain peace and stability in the region," he added.

Referring to peace talks and negotiations to denuclearize Korean peninsula, Xi emphasized that China will boost cooperation with North Korea and relevant parties to push the progress forward.

The Korean denuclearization process is stuck since breakdown of U.S.-North Korea talks in February when President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un left their second summit mid-way without reaching any deal.