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North Korean Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui's Official Visit to Russia

On January 14, Choe Son-hui arrived in Russia on an official visit at the head of a DPRK government delegation. She held meetings with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with North Korean Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui in Moscow on Jan. 16, 2024, photo by TASS Russian News Agency

Sergei Lavrov emphasized in his statement the timeliness of the talks with his colleague Choe Son-hui to summarize preliminary results of the work started after the September summit between Putin and DPRK State Affairs Chairman Kim Jong-un in the Russian Far East.

During the meeting with Choe, Lavrov underscored that Moscow appreciates Pyongyang’s support in the context of the special military operation in Ukraine and looks forward to continued cooperation between two countries at the UN and other multilateral organizations. He also mentioned that the Russian Federation calls for the refraining from any steps that lead to the escalation of tensions around the Korean Peninsula.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and North Korean Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui meeting in Moscow, photo by Russian State News Agency Ria News.

Yonhap News Agency reported that Choe’s visit to Moscow comes as the two countries seek to strengthen military cooperation, with North Korea providing weapons to Russia for use in its war with Ukraine in exchange for Russian technical assistance in pursuing Pyongyang's weapons programs.

However, the Russian side rejects accusations related to the acquisition of artillery shells and operational-tactical missiles from the DPRK.

The Russian daily newspaper “Vedomosti” wrote on this subject the opinion of Konstantin Asmolov, an expert of the Center for Korean Studies. According to the expert, an information campaign is being waged against the DPRK, the purpose of which is to create the impression that Moscow and Pyongyang are violating UN sanctions.

“Discussions about military-technical cooperation between Russia and the DPRK should not be taken seriously until North Korean missiles are detected on the battlefield in Ukraine,” - Vedomosti quoted an expert as saying.

On January 16, Vladimir Putin met with Choe Son-hui, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the DPRK. According to the Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, the heads of foreign affairs agencies informed the president about the agreements that were reached.

The Kremlin spokesman pointed out that Putin has an invitation from Kim Jong-un to visit North Korea. He anticipates this visit to take place, and the dates are currently being discussed through diplomatic channels.

Author: Kumushai Mamatbai kyzy

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