North Korean President Kim Jong Un plans to travel to Russia this month to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin with the aim of increasing bilateral military cooperation and discussing a possible arms supply deal.
According to US and allied sources to the newspaper ‘The New York Times’, Kim will travel from the North Korean capital, Pyongyang, to the Russian port city of Vladivostok on an armored train, a visit that could also include a stop in Moscow. .
Both are expected to attend an economic forum that is being held at the Far Eastern Federal University in Vladivostok from September 10 to 13, a meeting that the North Korean already witnessed in April 2019 during his last trip to the country. On his agenda, Kim also plans to visit the pier where the Russian Pacific fleet is located.
This comes after US intelligence confirmed last week that Moscow and Pyongyang are “actively” advancing in their negotiations for a possible arms deal, according to CNN.
White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby has reported that Putin and Kim have exchanged letters promising to “increase their bilateral cooperation.” “A high-level discussion may happen in the next few months,” he warned.
Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu met with Kim last July amid heightened tensions in the region and with Russia immersed in its invasion of Ukraine. During his visit, Shoigu conveyed to Kim a proposal to carry out a series of joint military exercises with China.