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Kim Jong-il May Visit Russia in June, Chinese Source Said

Kim Jong-il May Visit Russia in June, Chinese Source Said

Posted June. 17, 2004 21:36,   


Kim Jong-il, the chairman of the National Defense Committee of North Korea, is likely to visit Russia’s far east region as early as June 28, a source in Beijing, China said on June 17.

Another source said Chairman Kim expressed his willingness to visit Russia when he met with Chinese leaders in Beijing in April. The time and location of the visit has yet to be confirmed, the source added

Chairman Kim asked Russia’s far east regional governor, Sergei Darkin, in writing for his understanding of Kim’s unavailability with him in October when the governor visited Pyongyang, North Korea’s capital. In the letter, Kim expressed his willingness to meet with him soon, Itar-Tass reported.

Chairman Kim visited Moscow for 24 days in July and August of 2001 in his own train. In August of 2002, he also visited Russia’s far east region.

“Vladimir Putin will visit the region on June 22-24 to watch a military drill,” a Russia far east government official said, denying Kim’s visit. “I’ve never heard about Kim’s visit.” He added, “It is true that Governor Darkin invited Kim. But it was conventional. As of today, we are not preparing for any VIP visit.”

Yoo-Seong Hwang yshwang@donga.com