China tells N. Korea official Beijing supports its US summit

Senior Chinese diplomat Wang Yi has told North Korea's foreign minister that Beijing supports the North's planned summits with South Korea and the United States.

The Foreign Ministry cited Wang, China's state councilor and foreign minister, as telling Ri Yong Ho at a meeting in Beijing on Tuesday that China appreciates North Korea's efforts to ease tensions on the Korean Peninsula.

The ministry described Ri as saying that North Korea would maintain close strategic communications with China as outlined at last week's surprise meeting between Chinese leader Xi Jinping and his North Korean counterpart, Kim Jong Un.

Earlier Tuesday, Wang told reporters that China hopes a planned meeting between Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump would "deepen mutual understanding and build mutual trust."