North Korean leader in China

May 25, 2011 at 1:52 AM

BEIJING, May 25 (UPI) -- North Korean leader Kim Jong Il arrived in Beijing Wednesday for expected talks with Chinese President Zhu Jintao, Yonhap News agency reported.

The South Korean agency said the topics may include the North's nuclear program and the succession to power of Kim's heir apparent son. The report said the North Korean leader, making his third visit to China in over a year, reached Beijing's Diaoyutai state guesthouse after a 19-hour ride in his special train.

China is a close ally of North Korea, an isolated communist country facing severe economic problems.

The report said the Chinese government, which rarely publicizes Kim's trips, gave no details of his current visit.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, who attended the Tokyo trilateral summit last weekend with Japanese and South Korea leaders, was quoted as telling South Korean President Lee Myung-bak that Beijing invited Kim to study China's economic development.

The BBC reported with North Korea's economy woes, China is concerned about influx of refugees from that country.

China is seeking the resumption of the stalled six-nation talks on the North's denuclearization. Others in the talks include South Korea, Japan, the United States and Russia.

Kim's youngest son Kim Jong Un is his likely successor. A U.S. team is currently in North Korea to study its food situation.

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