Senior US diplomat Kurt Campbell will visit China, South Korea and Japan next week to discuss developments after the death of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il, the State Department said.
Campbell will travel to Beijing on Tuesday, Seoul the following day and Tokyo on January 6 for a range of talks with senior officials, “including latest developments related to North Korea,” a State Department statement said.
The United States said last week it hoped to work with North Korea after its mourning for Kim, who led an isolated Stalinist state that has alarmed its Asian neighbors and the United States with its nuclear and missile programs.
It confirmed the United States had had telephone contact with Pyongyang’s UN mission in New York amid efforts to determine whether to offer food assistance or schedule future talks with North Korea.
Pyongyang and Washington have no diplomatic relations.
The State Department said Campbell, the assistant secretary for East Asian and Pacific affairs, will also discuss developments related to Myanmar, which has made tentative steps at reform by opening talks with the opposition and ethnic minorities.
Earlier this month, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made a landmark visit to Myanmar, an ally of China.
Campbell is set to leave Tokyo for Washington on January 7, the State Department said.