Wu Drops in on Pyongyang

China’s chief Six-Party Talks negotiator arrived in North Korea
yesterday for his first visit of the calendar year, according to Chosun Central
News Agency (KCNA).

“Wu Dawei, Chinese government special envoy for Chosun
Peninsula issues, and his party arrived in Pyongyang on the 17th,”
the brief KCNA dispatch announced. There was no additional information on the
purpose of Wu’s visit.

Significant progress on
denuclearization dialogue is not expected in the immediate term. North Korea
has recently been driving up local tensions with a series of 25 short-range rocket
launches from its East Sea coast around Wonsan. At the same time, Pyongyang has been engaging
Japan and to a lesser extent South Korea in conciliatory dialogue, while there has been no movement on the kind of “sincere actions” toward
denuclearization that the United States and its regional allies have been
pushing for.

A spokesperson for the Chinese Foreign Ministry did not
comment on Wu’s bilateral visit in a regular ministry briefing yesterday, but
did call for a “reduction of the current tensions” with relation to North
Korea’s string of rocket launches.

Wu Dawei last visited Pyongyang in November 2013.

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