South Korean special envoy Lee Hae-chan, left, meets China's President Xi Jinping at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Friday, May 19, 2017.
European Council President Donald Tusk and EU foreign and security policy chief Federica Mogherini met respectively with Cho Yoon-je, the special envoy of South Korean President Moon Jae-in, in Brussels, days after Moon's inauguration.
And in Friday's meeting, according to China's official Xinhua News Agency, President Xi told the South Korean envoy that he believes the visit demonstrates "the importance that the new [South Korean] leader has attached to relations with Beijing", and also expressed his wish to see China's ties with South Korea back on a "normal track".
Chinese official media quoted Xi as saying China is committed to resolving any issues through dialogue and coordination.
Also in attendance were China's state councilor Yang Jiechi, as well as foreign minister Wang Yi.
Relations between Beijing and Seoul, strained by disagreement over South Korea's hosting of the U.S. Terminal High Altitude Area Defense ( THAAD ) system, have taken on a more conciliatory tone with the election earlier this month of President Moon Jae-in.
No doubt, considering the threatening nature of North Korea, which is certainly rising day by day, it is more important for the US and South Korea to improve their ties as quick as possible.
The South Korean envoy said in response Seoul is instead looking into building a self-developed missile defense system, a statement that echoes an earlier remark from Moon regarding the country's military future. China is North Korea's biggest economic partner and source of diplomatic support and has come under heavy pressure to use its influence to rein in the North's missile and nuclear activities. Beijing has suggested calling on North Korea to stop missile and nuclear tests in exchange for the USA and South Korea suspending military exercises in the region.
The South Korean leader had pledged to review the hasty deployment of THAAD at a golf course in central South Korea. South Korean businesses have faced boycotts, especially the retail group Lotte which provided the land on which the system is being constructed.
Wang on Thursday reiterated calls for its dismantling.
Kong told reporters on arrival that the South Korean president had asked him to convey to the US government and people his thoughts on South Korea and the alliance and the deployment of the United States missile defense system "Thad".