(LEAD) S. Korea's top security adviser makes surprise visit to U.S
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(LEAD) S. Korea's top security adviser makes surprise visit to U.S

2018/04/11 23:34

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(ATTN: UPDATES with details from 3rd para)

WASHINGTON, April 11 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's top national security adviser made a surprise visit to Washington Wednesday to meet with his U.S. counterpart, John Bolton, sources said.

The trip by Chung Eui-yong, head of the presidential National Security Office, comes ahead of the South Korean and U.S. presidents' separate summits with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in is set to meet with Kim on April 27, while U.S. President Donald Trump has said his meeting will be in May or early June.

It will be Chung's first meeting with Bolton since the U.S. national security adviser took office Monday.

The White House did not respond to a Yonhap request for confirmation of the trip.

Chung traveled to the U.S. capital last month shortly after his meeting with Kim in Pyongyang. He conveyed the North Korean leader's desire to hold a summit with Trump as soon as possible, along with his commitment to the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

Trump accepted the invitation on the spot.

According to one source, Seoul expressed its wish to arrange a meeting between Chung and Bolton soon after the latter took office and to establish a direct communication channel between the two to coordinate preparations for the summits.