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China's Xi to Visit South Korea for June Summit

FILE - China's President Xi Jinping walks during a welcoming ceremony outside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.
A diplomatic source in Seoul said Friday that Chinese President Xi Jinping will visit Seoul in June for a summit meeting with South Korean President Park Geun-hye.

The source, who asked not to be named, told VOA's Korean Service that China did not object to a South Korean proposal that President Xi visit Seoul early in June, however, the exact timing of the visit is not yet known.

The source said the South Korean government held a meeting of government officials and civilian experts last month to discuss preparations for the upcoming summit. Another such meeting is scheduled for next week.

The source added that Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi will visit Seoul this month to discuss the agenda and other issues of concern to the two countries prior to President Xi’s visit, his first to South Korea since becoming president.

North Korea, including Pyongyang’s recent threat of another nuclear test, are expected to be high on the agenda.

A South Korean government official told VOA that China could use the summit meeting as an opportunity to deliver a clear message to North Korea about its provocative actions.

The last Chinese president to visit South Korea was Hu Jintao, who attended a nuclear security summit in 2012.

This report was produced in collaboration with the VOA Korean service.

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