14:04 GMT +316 October 2019
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    Russian, North Korean Top Diplomats Hold Talks in Pyongyang

    © Sputnik / Ilya Pitalev
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    PYONGYANG (Sputnik) - Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met his North Korean counterpart Ri Yong Ho for talks on Thursday as part of the Russian diplomat’s visit to the reclusive Communist state, a Sputnik correspondent said.

    The ministers are expected to discuss bilateral relations, as well as Korean reconciliation and nuclear issues, ahead of US President Donald Trump’s anticipated June summit with the North’s Kim Jong Un in Singapore.

    The Sputnik reporter said only a handful of photo correspondents and TV crews were allowed to cover the start of the negotiations. The two diplomats began by shaking hands with each other and having a hearty exchange.

    The North Korean foreign minister congratulated Lavrov on the recent formation of a new government in Russia following the March presidential election, and wished good luck ahead of next month's FIFA World Cup, which Russia will host through July 15.

    Earlier, Sergey Lavrov placed flowers on Thursday at a memorial to North Korea’s leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il during his trip to the communist state. The ceremony on Mansu Hill was also attended by Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov and Ambassador Alexander Matsegora.

    Lavrov landed in Pyongyang early in the morning for talks with his North Korean counterpart, more than a month after their meeting in Moscow.


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