January 18, 2006

N.Korea confirms Kim Jong-il’s trip to China

SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korean leader Kim Jong-il returned
home from a visit to China, official media reported on
Wednesday, confirming speculation about an eight-day trip.

North Korea typically does not comment on Kim's rare trips
overseas until he has returned. The official KCNA news agency
said Kim had paid an unofficial visit to China from January 10
to 18 at the invitation of President Hu Jintao.

Chinese authorities have yet to comment.

Various media reports had said Kim spent several days
touring trade and commerce sites in China's southern Guangdong
province and also met Chinese officials in Beijing to discuss
stalled nuclear talks.

China is the North's main ally and a key source of aid.