SEOUL – North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and Russian President Vladimir Putin exchanged letters on Tuesday pledging to develop their ties in what Kim called a “long-standing strategic relationship”, official Pyongyang media said. KCNA.
The letters mark the 78th anniversary of Korea’s liberation from Japanese colonial rule from 1910 to 1945, which is also celebrated as a national holiday in South Korea.
In his letter to Putin, Kim said the two countries’ friendship was forged during World War II with the victory over Japan and “fully demonstrated their invincibility and might in the struggle to break the practices arbitrariness and imperialist hegemony,” KCNA said.
“I firmly believe that friendship and solidarity… will further develop into a long-standing strategic relationship in accordance with the demand of the new era,” Kim said in the letter.
“The two countries will always emerge victorious, firmly supporting and cooperating with each other in pursuit of their common goal and cause.”
The United States has accused North Korea of supplying weapons to Russia for its war in Ukraine, including artillery shells, shoulder rockets and missiles. Pyongyang and Moscow have denied any arms deals.
Last month, Russia’s defense minister stood with Kim as they looked at his new nuclear-capable missiles and attack drones at a military parade in Pyongyang.
Putin, in his message to Kim, also promised to strengthen bilateral relations.
“I am sure that we will strengthen bilateral cooperation in all fields for the well-being of the two peoples and the firm stability and security of the Korean Peninsula and all of Northeast Asia,” Putin said, according to KCNA.
Leaders of South Korea, the United States and Japan are due to discuss security cooperation on North Korea, Ukraine and other issues at a trilateral summit Aug. 18 at Camp David .
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