July 5 (UPI) -- A top North Korean official suggested an upcoming meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo could yield positive results during a meeting with South Korean Unification Minister Cho Myung-gyun.
Kim Yong Chol, vice chairman of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party, told the visiting South Korean official at the Koryo Hotel in Pyongyang that "negotiations will turn out well" with Pompeo on Friday, South Korean news service Newsis reported.
"When [Vice Chairman] Kim meets with Pompeo, Kim said in its own way the North will hold negotiations that will turn out well," Cho told South Korean reporters who had traveled to cover a basketball tournament between North and South.
"[I surmise] he made the remarks because North-South and U.S.-North Korea relations are moving in a virtuous cycle," the South Korean official added while ruling out the possibility of trilateral talks during Pompeo's visit to Pyongyang.
Cho said during his meeting with Kim the two sides agreed to be "better prepared" to conduct "swift and practical" negotiations and to work toward concrete results that demonstrate to North and South Koreans the Panmunjom Declaration is being implemented.
In Beijing, the Chinese foreign ministry welcomed the upcoming Pompeo visit to North Korea.
Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said the communication is a cause for joy, South Korean news agency Yonhap reported Thursday.
"We are delighted the United States and North Korea are strengthening negotiations with close contact, facing each other and showing mutual goodwill," Lu said.
Pompeo's visit is compatible with China's "double suspension" proposal, or reducing U.S-South Korea military cooperation in return for a North Korean agreement to "denuclearize," Lu said.
Pompeo will meet with South Korean and Japanese officials after his North Korea trip, according to Yonhap.