US President Donald Trump says China “appreciates” his meeting with North Korea leader Kim Jong-un.
Trump said in a tweet on Saturday that he had spoken to his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping.
“Chinese President XI JINPING and I spoke at length about the meeting with KIM JONG UN of North Korea,” said the US president. “President XI told me he appreciates that the US is working to solve the problem diplomatically rather than going with the ominous alternative. China continues to be helpful!”
Earlier this week, Trump agreed to appear as the first sitting US president to meet with a North Korean leader, a meeting that could be held by the end of May.
The surprise announcement came despite the US president’s call to unleash “fire and fury” on North Korea at the United Nations last year.
Tensions escalated between the two countries after Trump warned to “totally destroy” North Korea during a speech to the UN General Assembly.
Trump held a meeting with Chung Eui-yong, the South Korean national security adviser, at the Oval Office of the White House last week.
“We could come this far thanks to a great degree to President Trump,” Chung said. “We highly appreciate this fact.”
He further cautioned the US over repeating their “past mistakes,” in dealing with Pyongyang,
Chung added that Kim has been “frank and sincere” while offering to talk with the Americans, predicting a historic breakthrough following a Kim-Trump meeting.
Trump’s abrupt agreement to the offer even shocked some American officials present in the Oval Office.
US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Lieutenant General H.R. McMaster, the president’s national security adviser, have both voiced caution against such a meeting.
However, Trump’s latest tweet could signify a resolve on the side of the president to meet Kim despite opposition within his inner circle at the White House.