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North Korean leader says relations with Russia 'very first priority'

North Korean leader says relations with Russia 'very first priority'

 
- Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong-Un meet at Russia's Vostochny Cosmodrome in Far East
 

By Elena Teslova

MOSCOW (AA) - North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un said on Wednesday that relations with Russia are "the very first priority" for his country.

Meeting Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Russian spaceport Vostochny Cosmodrome in Russia's Amur region in the Far East, where he was invited, the North Korean leader thanked Putin for the warm reception and praised Russia's role and achievements in space exploration.

Kim said the Russian-North Korean friendship has "deep roots," and the Soviet Union played "a very important role in the liberation of the country," according to the Kremlin.

"And now, relations with the Russian Federation are the very first priority for our country. I am sure that our joint meeting will be another moment to raise our relations to a new level," he said.

Kim also noted that “Russia has risen to the holy struggle” to defend its state sovereignty and security against the hegemonic forces.

“We have always supported, and support all the decisions of President Putin, as well as the decisions of the Russian government. I also hope that we will always be together in the fight against imperialism and for the construction of a sovereign state," he said.

For his part, the Russian president noted the meeting is taking place during the year when the two nations celebrate the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties, and very soon Pyongyang will mark the 70th anniversary of the end of the War of Independence and the victory of the Korean people in this war.

“Of course, we need to talk about economic cooperation and humanitarian issues as well," he said.

Putin and Kim then visited several facilities of the cosmodrome and also examined the construction of the new infrastructure.

The Russian president also showed the North Korean leader Russia's Aurus, a family of executive and upper-class cars.

Vostochny is the first Russian civilian cosmodrome. It is located in the Amur region near the city of Tsiolkovsky. The construction began in 2012, and the first launch from Vostochny was carried out in 2016.

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