November 24, 2014 12:47
Russia and North Korea are "ready" to hold a summit, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told reporters on Thursday after meeting with visiting North Korean envoy Choe Ryong-hae.
North Korean media said earlier that Choe voiced hopes of a Pyongyang-Moscow summit next year as he delivered a letter from North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday.
Lavrov also expressed hopes that Russia and North Korea can start concrete discussions to link an inter-Korean railway through North Korea to the Trans-Siberian Railway once the newly-built Rajin-Hasan line begins trial runs late this month.
He added Moscow is ready to look into cooperative projects between Russia, South Korea and North Korea and discussions are underway for Russia to invest in the inter-Korean Kaesong Industrial Complex.
Lavrov, whose own country is not in the international community's good books due to its invasion of Ukraine, criticized UN moves to hold the North accountable for human rights abuses as "unconstructive."
Meanwhile, Chinese media reported that Choe, widely believed to be the North's No. 2 man now, astonished Russian officials by turning up an hour late to his meeting with Lavrov and wearing a flashy gold watch.
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