Russian top brass heads to North Korea for bilateral military talks days after Trump trip | World | News


A statement issued by the Russian Ministry of Defense said Mr Fomin would hold “bilateral talks with the leadership” of the North Korean Ministry of People’s Armed Forces. The statement added: “During the upcoming talks, the sides plan to discuss the situation in Northeast Asia and on the Korean Peninsula, the conditions and prospects of Russian-North Korean cooperation in the military sphere, as well as relevant issues on the international and regional security agenda.” Representatives of the two countries previously met in Moscow in late April, just prior to a summit between Russia’s President Vladimir Putin and Kim in Vladivostok, close to Russia’s border with the secretive communist country.

READ MORE: North Korea threatens US over ‘hostile’ sanctions after failed denuclearisation talks

Russian defense minister Sergey Shoygu said the latest talks would “help strengthen cooperation between the defense departments,” the Russian Ministry of Defense reported.

In April, Kim attended a wreath-laying ceremony at the Military Glory of the Pacific Fleet, a monument attached to the Russian naval Pacific Fleet headquarters.

A North Korean military delegation is also reported to have visited the Pacific fleet on June 4 – although the online story, carried on Russia media outlet Vesti Primorye, was later taken down.

High-level bilateral military talks between the two sides have not been held in North Korea since December 2017, when the deputy head of Russia’s National Defence Command Centre Viktor Kalganov led a delegation to Pyongyang.

Mr Putin is keen to make North Korea’s military security a key item on the agenda of future negotiations.

After his meeting with Kim, he told reporters: “First and foremost, Kim wants to ensure his national interest and ensure his country’s security.”

He also suggested the solution to breaking the deadlock in denuclearisation talks between the US lay in offering Pyongyang security guarantees.

He told the Financial Times in an interview before last week’s G20 summit in Japan: “What we should be talking about is not how to make North Korea disarm, but how to ensure the unconditional security of North Korea.

“We must respect North Korea’s legitimate security concerns and we must find a way of ensuring its security that will satisfy North Korea.”

On Sunday, Mr Trump became the first sitting US president to set foot on North Korean soil when he walked over into the Demilitarised Zone which separates North and South Korea.

There he held an impromptu meeting with Kim, at which point he invited North Korean leader to visit him in Washington for more talks.

Through an interpreter, Kim told Mr Trump: “I never expected to meet you in this place.”

The President called the meeting a “big moment”.

Nevertheless specifics about how PyongYang will be persuaded to give up their nuclear weapons remain unclear.

Mr Trump previously meet Kim in Vietnam earlier this year.

However, their efforts to strike a deal of North Korea’s nuclear weapons programme ended in failure.

Source link


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here