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April 25, 2018, 9:53 pm IST
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Kim meets Chinese official, calls for strengthening ties

Kim meets Chinese official, calls for strengthening ties

 Apr 15, 2018

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has personally greeted senior Chinese diplomat Song Tao in Pyongyang on Sunday, state media reported.

Song arrived with a Chinese troupe to attend a spring art festival commemorating the birth anniversary of North Korea's founder Kim Il Sung on April 15. As he accorded warm hospitality to Song, Kim remembered his recent visit to China.

According to the Korea Central News Agency, "(Kim) said with deep emotion that the Chinese comrades accorded cordial hospitality to him with utmost sincerity in token of warm comradely friendship during his recent unforgettable visit to China."

In March, Kim visited Beijing, his first visit abroad since ascending to power in 2011.

North Korea's relationship with its sole ally during the 1950-1953 Korean war had strained when China pushed UN to punish Pyongyang for its nuclear weapons programme. But Kim now plans to develop the traditional friendship 'into a fresh phase of development,' the state media report added.

Song's latest trip to Pyongyang is in sharp contrast to his visit in November last year. Sent by President Xi Jinping to discuss the outcome of China's 19th Party Congress, Song had returned home without meeting Kim Jong-un.

This time around, Song promised "a fresh contribution to promoting the prolonged and stable development of the China-DPRK relations." (UNI)



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