North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is set to pay an official visit to Russia in the near future at the invitation of President Vladimir Putin, the Kremlin said in a statement on Monday.
The announcement of the visit, which the Kremlin said would take place “in the coming days,” followed a report by South Korean broadcaster YTN, which cited a senior government official as saying that Kim was “slowly moving inside North Korea on a private train toward the northeastern border.” Russia and North Korea share a short stretch of border near Russia’s far eastern city of Vladivostok.
Commenting on the upcoming visit, Kremlin Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov said that Putin and Kim will hold talks with Russian and North Korean delegations present, and if necessary, in a one-on-one format.
Earlier this month, the New York Times also reported, citing US and other Western officials, that Kim wanted to discuss with his Russian counterpart further military cooperation. Meanwhile, on Monday, Vladimir Putin started a two-day trip to Vladivostok, where he will attend the Eastern Economic Forum.