U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, center, is greeted as he arrives at Beijing Capital International Airport in Beijing, Tuesday, June 26, 2018. Mattis laid out plans for a less contentious, more open dialogue with Chinese leaders as he travels to Asia, less than a month after he slammed Beijing at an international conference for its militarization of islands in the South China Sea. (AP Photo/Lolita Baldor)

Mattis arrives in China; NKorea to be key topic of meetings

June 26, 2018 - 5:11 am

BEIJING (AP) — U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has arrived in Beijing for meetings with senior Chinese leaders, as the world waits for indications North Korea is taking steps to dismantle its nuclear program following the summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

The North Korean negotiations are expected to be a primary discussion during Mattis' meetings. Beijing is considered a key influencer on Pyongyang and Chinese President Xi Jinping said last week that China would "as always play a constructive role" in the process.

Kim was in Beijing for a two-day visit last week and met with Xi. The Chinese president said at the time that he hoped that Pyongyang and Washington could fully implement the outcome of the summit earlier this month between Trump and Kim.

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