Hu vows to work with Pyongyang
Updated: 2012-04-24 07:40
By Li Xiaokun and Cui Haipei (China Daily)
President meets with high-level DPRK official in Beijing
President Hu Jintao on Monday expressed confidence in Kim Jong-un, the young leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, while promising Beijing will work with Pyongyang for peace on the Korean Peninsula.
Hu made the remarks while meeting with Kim Yong-il, alternate member of the Political Bureau and secretary of the central committee of the Workers' Party of Korea, the DPRK's ruling party, at the Great Hall of the People. Kim is heading a WPK delegation visiting China.
This is the first time Hu has met a high-level official from Pyongyang since the DPRK's failed rocket launch on April 13, which rattled the nerves of neighboring countries.
Kim was sent to Beijing soon after the Fourth Conference of the WPK, held earlier this month, to share the content of the meeting, Hu said at the start of the meeting.
This "fully reflected the high importance" the DPRK attaches to the relationship, Hu said.
Kim Jong-un was elected first secretary of the WPK at the conference, and was elected first chairman of the DPRK National Defense Commission during the fifth session of the 12th Supreme People's Assembly.
According to a press release issued by the Foreign Ministry, Hu told Kim Yong-il that he believes the WPK and the DPRK government will lead the country to achieve new accomplishments and build a prosperous nation under the leadership of Comrade Kim Jong-un.
On Saturday, Kim Yong-il and Wang Jiarui, the head of the International Department of the Communist Party of China, led a meeting under a strategic communication mechanism between the ruling parties.
Xinhua said they discussed the situation on the Korean Peninsula. Kim has also met State Councilor Dai Bingguo, China's most senior official on foreign policy.
Wang Junsheng, an Asian studies expert at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said Monday's meeting might have been an in-depth discussion with some substance, covering topics such as the domestic and foreign policy of the DPRK's new leadership.
Chen Qi, an expert on East Asian studies at Tsinghua University, said the DPRK also wanted to mend the bilateral relationship, which could have been affected by the rocket launch.
Chen said Pyongyang is in urgent need of support from China because Washington suspended food aid to the DPRK after the launch.
Also on Monday, the DPRK's military vowed to launch soon unspecified "special actions" meant to reduce the Republic of Korea's government and media companies "to ashes" in less than four minutes, in an escalation of its recent threats.
Pyongyang last week renewed its promise to wage a "sacred war", saying ROK President Lee Myung-bak had insulted Pyongyang's April 15 celebrations of the birth centennial of national founder Kim Il-sung.
A large-scale rally denouncing Lee's government was held on Friday in Pyongyang at Kim Il-sung Square. Similar demonstrations followed in provinces and cities nationwide.
The threat follows the UN's condemnation of Pyongyang's rocket launch.
Some ROK analysts speculated Pyongyang's statement was meant to unnerve Seoul. Others said it could be planning terrorist attacks.
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AP contributed to this story.