DPRK premier visits China

According to the AFP (via Straits Times):

North Korea’s premier, who is reportedly close to the son and heir apparent of leader Kim Jong Il, has visited north-east China this week for talks with Chinese officials, state media reported.

Choe Yong Rim – who in late September was named a member of the ruling party’s politburo presidium, of which Mr Kim had been the only member – met with Chinese Vice-Premier Zhang Dejiang in Changchun, Xinhua news agency said.

It is the same region bordering the North that Mr Kim toured for five days in late August – a visit that state media said had largely focused on economic issues and analysts speculated included calls from Beijing to speed up reform.

Mr Choe ‘congratulated China on its economic and social development’ and said Pyongyang was ‘willing to draw experience from China and further strengthen its exchanges and cooperation with the country,’ Xinhua said late on Wednesday.

Mr Zhang said Beijing would work with the North to ‘promote the China-DPRK friendship to a new height’, the report said. South Korea’s Yonhap news agency, citing unnamed sources, said Mr Choe toured electronics and pharmaceutical companies in the region this week, as well as an agricultural research centre in the city of Harbin.

Xinhua did not specify when Mr Choe and Mr Zhang had met, nor did it say when Mr Choe was due to return home. Yonhap also reported that Mr Choe was believed to be a key aide to Mr Kim’s son Jong Un, in his late 20s, who in September was promoted to a four-star general and given powerful posts in the ruling party.

KBS also reported on the story.

Read the full story here:
N.Korea premier visits China
AFP via Straits Times


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