China's top nuclear envoy has apparently pushed to visit North Korea following his trip to South Korea, but Pyongyang has not answered his request, a diplomatic source in Seoul said Friday.
Wu Dawei is to leave for Beijing on Friday after a five-day stay in Seoul during which he met senior government officials and presidential candidates to discuss North Korea and its nuclear and missile threats.
Wu Dawei (L) meets with Lee Hee-ho, the wife of late former South Korean President Kim Dae-jung, in Seoul on April 13, 2017. (Yonhap)
Earlier, a local newspaper reported that Wu will be headed for Pyongyang after completing his Seoul trip, citing a source involved in those talks.
The trip will be aiming to deliver China's stance on the North's nuclear and missile programs, and dissuade it from engaging in any additional provocations, it added.
"At this moment, it seems that Wu doesn't have a plan to go to the North," the source said on condition of anonymity. "As far as I know, the North has not answered to China's request for a visit."
Speculation is still lingering that Wu might be seeking to travel to the North in the near future amid worries that the North might be carrying out a major provocation, including an additional nuclear test.
China's foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang told at regular press briefing in Beijing on Thursday that there is no relevant information about Wu's possible trip to the North but added that the two countries maintain normal exchanges, apparently leaving the possibility open.
A Chinese embassy official declined to comment on the speculation, saying only that Wu will be headed to Beijing on Friday as scheduled.
Wu made his latest trip to Pyongyang in early February last year, about a month after the North conducted its fourth nuclear test. A few days after his departure, the North fired a long-range rocket carrying a satellite. (Yonhap)