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Korean officials meet in attempt to repair ties

Korean officials meet in attempt to repair ties

Mr Xi told Lee Hae-Chan, representing new South Korean President Moon Jae-In, that his visit showed the importance Mr Moon attached to relations with Beijing.

"This is the desire of our two peoples but also our governments".

Chinese President Xi Jinping told a visiting South Korean envoy on Friday that he was willing to put relations with Seoul back on a normal track after ties were soured by the United States placing an advanced anti-missile system in South Korea.

During the long 40-minute call made by Xi, the Chinese leader explained reasons for Beijing's opposition against the THAAD deployment in South Korea, Cheong Wa Dae officials said earlier.

In addition, there has also been a decline in Chinese sales of South Korean vehicle manufacturers Hyundai and Kia, as well as other protests.

While it is unclear whether Lee discussed the THAAD issue with China's president, it was raised during his meeting with top Chinese diplomat and state councilor Yang Jiechi.

The Times reports that, with Moon in the hands of South Korea's presidential security detail now, the erstwhile bodyguard is taking a well-deserved break - much to the disappointment of his many admirers.

"THAAD retaliation is a Chinese government-engineered project", Lee said.

The secret transportation caused strong backlash from residents and peace activists who had stood sentry beside the entrance road to the golf course to block any further deployment of other THAAD elements.

Lee handed Xi a letter from President Moon Jae-in and expressed his gratitude for the warm reception. South Korean businesses have faced boycotts, especially the retail group Lotte which provided the land on which the missile shield is being constructed. Washington later invoiced Seoul for the defense shield - a step strongly opposed by the South Korean authorities.

Rep. Moon Hee-sang, left, a special envoy to Japan, meets with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Tokyo on Thursday. In return, Moon's sending of Lee Hae-chan as a special envoy to China is another sign of both countries' intentions to build bridges.

Later in the day, a special envoy for the European Union and Germany embarked on his trip, which is expected to focus on sharing the president's willingness to consolidate ties with European countries.

Moon also met with Fukushiro Nukaga, head of a nonpartisan group of Japanese lawmakers for friendship between the two countries.

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