Seoul, Nov 16 (EFE).- North Korea and Russia held talks on expanding cooperation in trade, economy, science and technology at a meeting of a bilateral cooperation committee during a visit by a Russian delegation, North Korean state media reported Thursday.
A photo released by the official North Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) shows a government delegation of the Russian Federation led by Minister of Natural Resources and Ecology Alexandr Kozlov, paying a floral tribute to the statues of President Kim Il Sung and Chairman Kim Jong Il on Mansu Hill in Pyongyang, North Korea, 14 November 2023 (issued 15 November 2023). EFE-EPA/KCNA EDITORIAL USE ONLY
“The meeting discussed and confirmed in detail the measures for revitalizing and expanding the multi-faceted bilateral exchange and cooperation in different fields, including trade, economy, science and technology, under the agreement reached at the historic DPRK-Russia summit and talks held in September 2023,” the KCNA news agency said.
“A protocol of the meeting was signed,” it added.
It is believed that the summit in September between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and Russian President Vladimir Putin served to cement an agreement on military cooperation and trade.
Seoul and Washington believe that North Korea has recently delivered millions of artillery rounds to Russia to use in its war against Ukraine and that Pyongyang may be receiving technological support and advice on space launches in return at a time when it hopes to launch a space rocket to put its first spy satellite into orbit.
The meeting was held in Pyongyang on Wednesday between North Korea’s minister of external economic relations Yun Jong Ho and the Russian Minister of Natural Resources and Ecology, Alexander Kozlov, who heads the visiting delegation and was one of the officials who most actively participated during Kim Jong-un’s visit to Russia in September.
Experts have said the growing rapprochement between Pyongyang and Moscow may involve new shipments of North Korean workers to mining or logging operations in the Russian Far East, something prohibited under sanctions by the UN Security Council, of which Moscow is a permanent member.
According to the groups of experts that monitor compliance with the sanctions, the salary in foreign currency of these workers, who live in conditions of semi-slavery, is received for the most part by the regime.
After the failure of denuclearization negotiations between Pyongyang and Washington in 2019, Pyongyang approved a weapons modernization plan in 2021 and since then, has carried out many missile tests, in addition to rejecting the resumption of dialogue and seeking closer ties with Beijing and Moscow. EFE