china appears to be preparing to welcome some dignitary. It has cleared the famous Tiananmen Square of tourists, and a guesthouse is being readied. This is the place where senior officials of North Korea usually stay when in the capital. There is also an armored train in the picture and Kim Jong-un’s father and grandfather used to travel on such trains. Hence, rumors are rife that the leader of North Korea could be visiting.

Los Angeles Times reports that China is an ally of North Korea and Kim Jong-un could be arriving for consultation with Chinese leaders.

He probably wants to fine tune his strategies before the meetings with South Korea in April and the summit meeting with President Donald Trump in May.

Is Kim really visiting Beijing?

Official sources in China, North Korea, and South Korea are tightlipped about any such visit. However, Japan maintains a close watch over what happens in their region and the Japanese media was the first to notice an armored train that crossed over from North Korea into China. It was at the Chinese border city of Dandong.

Japanese TV showed images of the 21-car train, with distinct markings. Other sources also appeared to confirm the news that Kim Jong-un was in Beijing.

The authenticity of the reports will have to be verified. If true, this would be his first ever visit outside his own country after taking over the reins following the death of his father in 2011. It would also mean that the Chinese leaders would like to engage in face-to-face talks to sum him up and apparently much will be at stake. Kim is scheduled to meet South Korea's president Moon Jae-in in April, and Donald Trump the following month.

The path to denuclearization

Kim Jong-un has been away from public view since the beginning of March after he had met a delegation from South Korea. He is reported to be busy preparing for the scheduled summits with South Korea and the United States. China is the only ally of North Korea and with a summit meeting on the cards between Kim and Trump, there are hopes that Kim would see reason and agree to abandon his nuclear program.

In case he has really gone to Beijing, it will be the first time in seven years.

His intention might be to obtain the advice of seasoned leaders in the event that he will have to bid goodbye to his nuclear ambitions and concentrate on rebuilding his country. It is possible that he would cozy up to his neighbor and agree for unification. That might lead to a conflict of interest between South Korea and the United States. The future is uncertain and the leaders must work towards establishing peace in the region.

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