China's Xi heads for NKorea for state visit, talks with Kim

Chinese state media say President Xi Jinping has departed for his state visit to North Korea, which he has said will strengthen the countries' strategic ties.

Xinhua news agency said Xi left Thursday morning and was accompanied by his wife, Peng Liyuan, and several Communist Party officials. He's expected to have talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, including about his nuclear program as talks have stalled with the U.S.

Experts say Xi will likely endorse North Korea's calls for an incremental disarmament process in which every action Pyongyang takes it met with U.S. concessions on sanctions and security issues.