Of course the freeing of the US prisoners by North Korea is good news. It's being seen as a goodwill gesture ahead of the summit between Trump and Kim Jong-un.
Predictably enough it's made the headlines, and reinforces the prevailing narrative that peace is breaking out on the Korean peninsula, and only the obduracy of the US President can now prevent that happy eventuality. So we should be wary.
Less publicised was the fact that this followed on from another meeting between Kim Jong-un and the Chinese President - the second in two months. This time Kim flew to Dalian, in northeast China, in his private jet.
The official North Korean Rodong Sinmun has been all over this historic occasion:
The meaningful meeting and talks between the supreme leaders of the two countries took place in Dalian City, Liaoning Province, China.
Kim Jong Un left Pyongyang by plane for his personal use on the morning of May 7. [...]
At noon of local time the plane landed at the airport.
Kim Jong Un alighted from the plane to shake hands with pleasure with those officials and exchanged kind greetings.
A woman presented a bunch of flowers to him and offered him greetings.
He expressed thanks and got on his car to head for Bangchuidao Guesthouse.
When he arrived at the guesthouse, its employees warmly greeted him.
There took place a meeting and talks between Kim Jong Un and Xi Jinping in the afternoon.
Xi Jinping came to Dalian and kindly greeted Kim Jong Un.
Kim Jong Un had a warm and emotional meeting with Xi Jinping and had a souvenir photo taken with him.
The top leaders of the two countries exchanged warm salute, pleased to meet again after the lapse of over one month.
Then there took place talks between Kim Jong Un and Xi Jinping.
Yes, I think we get the picture.
Kim Jong Un expressed his thanks to Xi Jinping for sparing time to come to Dalian and warmly greet him and providing the best convenience with utmost sincerity despite his tight political schedule.
He said he was very pleased that the DPRK-China relations have recently greeted a fresh heyday and are undergoing further development.
He, in particular, highly appreciated that the close high-level visits between the two parties and the two countries and the strategic communication between the supreme leaderships of the DPRK and China are underway on an unprecedented level.
In those days the DPRK and China have become all the more close and inseparable in their inner feelings, he said, hoping to expand the friendly visits between the two countries and keep the close contacts in a flexible and diverse manner in the future, too.
They've even published Kim's "letter of thanks" to President XI:
The message noted that the significant meeting between Kim Jong Un and Xi Jinping, in the significant historic period when the DPRK-China friendship which has been carried forward through centuries and generations is developing as required by the new era, served as an important motive force in further promoting the special and close relations, friendship and comradely trust between them and strengthening the support and cooperation for the cause of socialism in the DPRK and China and more viably advancing the DPRK-China friendship.
And there's a whole gallery of photos. Clearly Pyongyang are seeing this as a very big deal.
This is not good news for those who were hoping that the pressure on North Korea would continue, via the sanctions. South Korea's Chosun Ilbo sums it up:
North Korean Leader Kim Jong-un's second China visit less than two months on Monday and Tuesday is raising concerns that Beijing could fatally weaken international sanctions that have forced the regime to the negotiating table.
UN Security Council resolutions severely limit oil exports to North Korea as well as joint ventures with the North and were effective only thanks to China's cooperation under U.S. pressure....
For now, there have been no reports that Xi made any pledges or comments to Kim signaling a weakening of sanctions, but there is a possibility that China will allow some resumption of trade to boost its influence over the North.
"Even if Chinese authorities merely hint that smuggling across its border with North Korea will be overlooked, bilateral trade will immediately recover," a diplomatic source said. "If that happens, it will be difficult to get North Korea to dismantle its nuclear weapons program even if it agrees to talks."
After the first meeting of the two leaders in March, there were reports of North Korean workers reappearing over the Chinese border. What will President Xi have agreed to now, as he continues to show his friendship - and, we can assume, support - for his new protégé? With this latest meeting, it becomes clearer that Xi is providing his young friend with timely advice - continue the charm offensive....make nice....hand over the US hostages. It'll be easy to blame Trump if things don't go well.
Next stop, smooth talk South Korea's President Moon, then let's see if we can't get the US out of the area.
For the moment it all looks to be going swimmingly.