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Kerry to visit China in late January

By Xinhua

Kerry to visit China in late January
US Secretary of State John Kerry speaks during a press briefing at the State Department in Washington, DC, Jan 7, 2016. (AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB)

WASHINGTON - US Secretary of State John Kerry will visit China later this month for talks on issues including the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), the State Department said Friday.

Kerry will travel to Beijing, China, on Jan 27 "for meetings with senior leaders of the Chinese government to discuss a range of global, regional, and bilateral issues, including North Korea," State Department spokesman John Kirby said in a press release.

Deputy Secretary of State Tony Blinken is also scheduled to visit China next week for discussions also expected to focus on DPRK.

The DPRK announced last week that it had successfully carried out its first hydrogen bomb test.

While disputing its claim about the test, Washington vowed to punish Pyongyang for its flagrant violations of UN Security Council resolutions. The US has been holding consultations in the past week with the Republic of Korea, Japan and other countries on how to respond to the DPRK nuclear test.

Before his trip to China, Kerry will travel to Zurich, Switzerland, on Jan 20 to discuss the situation of Syria and Ukraine with his Russian counterpart before heading to Davos for the World Economic Forum, the State Department said.

After Switzerland, he will visit Saudi Arabia on Jan 23 for talks with Saudi officials and foreign ministers from the Gulf Cooperation Council.

Kerry will also travel on to Southeast Asia for talks on the upcoming Special US-ASEAN Summit in Sunnylands, California.

He will visit Vientiane, Laos, on Jan 25, for meetings with Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong and Foreign Minister Thongloun Sisoulith and will go to Phnom Penh on Jan 26 to meet with Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen and Foreign Minister Hor Namhong, according to the press release.

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