The deal has apparently been brokered by South Korean leader Moon Jae-in and Seoul’s lead envoy, National Security Advisor Chung Eui-Yong, who met with Xi in Beijing for 35 minutes in an apparent bid to assuage his worries.
At the same time, another delegation headed to Tokyo to meet Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe about the proposed talks, which will focus on North Korea’s nuclear and missile programmes.
The South Korean presidential office later reported Xi as saying after the meeting: “I support the US-NK talks.
“I am delighted that South Korea’s efforts have made great progress in the overall Korean Peninsula situation and that close dialogue between NK and the US has been achieved.”
Chung had spoken to Yang Jiechi, China’s top diplomat, for three hours prior to meeting Mr Xi, the South Koreans said.
China is widely regarded as having been caught somewhat by surprise by the announcement of the planned meeting between Mr Trump and Kim.
However the superpower appears to be attempting to take partial credit, judging be a report in government mouthpiece People’s Daily.
The newspaper suggested the diplomatic breakthrough followed China’s “dual-suspension” proposal, whereby North Korea agreed to freeze its missile-testing program in return for the suspension of US-South Korean military drills.
However, North Korea has provide a concrete commitment to cut back its nuclear program, while Kim apparently told a South Korean delegation to Pyongyang last week that he understands the need for Seoul and Washington to continue the joint drills.
A White House statement said Xi had welcomed to prosper of talks during a call with Mr Trump on Friday.
It added: “The two leaders welcomed the prospect of dialog between the United States and North Korea, and committed to maintain pressure and sanctions until North Korea takes tangible steps toward complete, verifiable, and irreversible denuclearisation.”
Meanwhile President Moon claimed “important changes” were happening in East Asian geopolitics.
He added: “Should we succeed, there will be dramatic changes in world history, and (South) Korea will have played the leading role.”
Nevertheless, there is no word from Pyongyang about when the talks that the regime is said to have proposed will take place.
North Korea’s state media is yet to report on the developments and the regime has not so far respond officially to Trump’s acceptance of the invitation to talks.