In this April 14, 2018, photo provided Sunday, April 15, 2018, by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, left, shakes hands with Song Tao, head of the Chinese Communist Party Central Committee's global department in North Korea.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un personally greeted a top Chinese official in Pyongyang and called for stronger ties with Beijing, state media said on Sunday, as the traditional allies seek to heal battered relations.
Kim made his first visit to China in March, in a secret trip that reopened ties between the two governments after years of strained relations due to Beijing's opposition to Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programme and support of global sanctions against North Korea.
Kim expressed "satisfaction" over the recent development related to the bilateral relations between the two countries, the KCNA said, apparently pointing to his surprise visit to Beijing last month and summit talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
The two exchanged "profound views on the important matters of mutual concern" between their parties and the worldwide situation, KCNA said, without providing details.
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Kim is preparing to meet South Korean President Moon Jae-in on April 27 and is also expected to hold an unprecedented summit with U.S. President Donald Trump either in May or June. Kim is reported to have welcomed the delegation, saying he will mobilize relevant departments to provide the greatest hospitality.
North Korea's relationship with its sole ally during the 1950-1953 Korean war had strained when China pushed United Nations to punish Pyongyang for its nuclear weapons programme.
Marking the two sides' efforts to boost their ties, Song arrived in the North on Friday, with the cultural delegation, to participate in the April Spring Friendship Art Festival, which commemorates regime founder Kim Il Sung's birth on Apr. 15.
China has sent art troupes to every festival since 1986, except in 2016.