General Kim Yong Chol landed at Beijing airport on Tuesday, and is expected to journey on to New York the following day after talks with Chinese officials.
President Donald Trump confirmed his administration was expecting General Chol, saying a team was already in place for talks.
We have put a great team together for our talks with North Korea. Meetings are currently taking place concerning Summit, and more. Kim Young Chol, the Vice Chairman of North Korea, heading now to New York. Solid response to my letter, thank you!Loading...
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 29, 2018
A separate team of White House officials has also reportedly headed to Singapore to sort out logistics for the historic meeting.
The trip is perhaps the biggest indication that the two countries are committed to the summit, which is scheduled to take place in Singapore on 12 June.
Both sides earlier appeared to have cancelled the talks, giving no concrete reasons for doing so.
General Kim Yong Chol’s visit – considering his status – is seen as an assurance by the DPRK’s that it was ready for the Summit.
He accompanied Kim Jong Un on both of his recent trips to China to meet President Xi Jinping and held talks with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo when he travelled to Pyongyang.
Notably, he sat next to Trump’s daughter Ivanka, who is also a White House aide, during the closing ceremony of the Winter Olympics in the South Korean resort of Pyeongchang which was a turning point in the nuclear crisis.