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N Korea at crossroads

North Korea says Kim Jong Un to 'soon visit' Russia

One-on-one talks with Putin planned during leader's inaugural visit

  © Reuters

VLADIVOSTOK (Kyodo) -- North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will "soon" visit Russia for talks with President Vladimir Putin, an official media report from Pyongyang said Tuesday.

It is the first time North Korea's state media have reported on plans for what would be Kim's maiden trip to Russia since taking power at the end of 2011.

The Korean Central News Agency said the visit will be made at the invitation of Putin. But its report did not elaborate on Kim's schedule or the venue for the talks. Russian officials earlier this month said Putin will meet with Kim in Vladivostok. The North Korean leader is due to visit the port city in Russia's Far East from Wednesday through Friday, they said.

Putin and Kim are expected to hold their first one-on-one talks, to be followed by an expanded meeting on Thursday, according to the officials.

Kim will likely leave from Pyongyang on Tuesday by his special train to Vladivostok.

The last visit by a North Korean leader to Russia was made by Kim's late father, Kim Jong Il, in August 2011.

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