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PHOTOS: Kim Jong Un had a grand old time during his surprise visit to China

Kim Jong Un's time in China had the same pomp and circumstance as a normal state visit.

by Alex Lubben
Mar 28 2018, 6:13pm

Kim Jong Un’s first out-of-state trip since coming into power in 2011 was so secretive that China banned all talk of the visit online. But users came up with some nicknames for North Korea’s Supreme Leader to bypass the censorship, like “fatty on the train” and “the obese patient.”

The speculation that Kim was in China for an unannounced visit started when people spotted a train in Beijing on Sunday that was similar to the one Kim’s father used. His presence in China, however, wasn’t confirmed until Tuesday night, when he left.

Kim had, in fact, arrived Sunday via a bulletproof train with his wife, Ri Sol-ju — and lots of lobster and wine, according to the New York Times. A group of senior advisers also accompanied the couple.

Although the visit was unannounced and therefore “unofficial,” Kim’s time in China had the same pomp and circumstance as a normal state visit. The Chinese hosted Kim for a banquet in the Great Hall of the People in Tiananmen Square, complete with honor guards and a gaggle of state media.

Both countries depicted the leaders as allies, and Kim assured Chinese President Xi Jinping that he was committed to giving up nuclear weapons, Chinese state media reported.

Before Kim arrived, China had beefed up its security, which fueled speculation about the visit.

Police in tactical gear block a road leading to the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, Tuesday, March 27, 2018. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)

The arrival of a high-ranking North Korean official all but confirmed everyone's suspicions.

Motorcycles escort a motorcade believed to be carrying a high-ranking North Korean official to Beijing train station from the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse on March 27, 2018. (Kyodo via AP Images)

Finally, Kim and his wife arrived in Beijing on March 27 — on a bulletproof, 21-car train, no less. (Kim is reportedly afraid to fly.) Lobster and lots of wine were served while a group of "lady conductors" serenaded the Supreme Leader in Russian and Korean, according to the New York Times.

This picture from North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) taken on March 27, 2018 and released on March 28, 2018 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (C) waving from his train as it prepares to depart from Beijing railway station. (AFP/Getty Images)

Kim's arrival was broadcast across Asia.

People watch a TV broadcasting a news report on a meeting between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing, in Seoul, South Korea, March 28, 2018. (REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji)

The visit was meant to display strong diplomatic ties between China and North Korea. So, naturally, Kim and Chinese President Xi Jinping posed for several photo ops.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center left, and his wife Ri Sol Ju, left, Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, center right, and his wife Peng Liyuan pose for a photo at Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing on March 27, 2018. (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP)

North Korean state media, however, portrayed the meeting of the minds quite differently than Chinese state media did. The latter positioned Xi as a wise statesman who was schooling Kim.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, left, and Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, shake hands at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on March 26, 2018. (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP)
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, attends a talk with Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on March 26, 2018. (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP)

But the visit wouldn't have been complete without some lavish dinner parties.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, second from right, and his wife Ri Sol Ju, right, talk with Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, second from left, and his wife Peng Liyuan during a lunch at Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing on March 27, 2018. (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP)
This picture from North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) taken on March 26, 2018 and released on March 28, 2018 shows China's President Xi Jinping (centre R) and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (centre L) attending a banquet at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. (AFP/Getty Images)

Kim appeared to enjoy himself.

This picture from North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) taken on March 26, 2018 and released on March 28, 2018 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (C) during a dinner banquet at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. (/AFP/Getty Images)

This article originally appeared on VICE News US.

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