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V.K. Singh, minister of state for external affairs, is on a two-day visit to North Korea. File photo: Hindustan Times
V.K. Singh, minister of state for external affairs, is on a two-day visit to North Korea. File photo: Hindustan Times

V.K. Singh holds talks in North Korea, first trip in 20 years

On India's worries over Pakistan's missile technology access to Pyongyang, North Korea says it will never allow any action that will cause security concerns

New Delhi: North Korea on Wednesday said it will never allow any action that will cause security concerns for India, responding to New Delhi’s worries linking Pakistan’s missile technology access to Pyongyang.

An official statement from the ministry of external affairs said the assurance came during minister of state for external affairs V.K. Singh’s two-day visit to North Korea starting Wednesday.

Singh held discussions with North Korea’s vice president of the Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly Kim Yong Dae, foreign minister Ri Yong Ho, minister of culture Pak Chun Nam and vice foreign minister Choe Hui Cholon on issues covering political, regional, economic, educational and cultural cooperation between the two countries, said the official statement.

“The minister of state highlighted the threat from nuclear proliferation, in particular India’s concerns in the context of the proliferation linkages with India’s neighbourhood. The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) side emphasised that as a friendly country DPRK will never allow any action that would create concerns for India’s security," said the statement.

Singh’s visit is the first ministerial level visit from India to North Korea after a gap of almost 20 years, it said.

The two sides also decided to explore further ties in vocational education, agriculture, pharmaceuticals, yoga and traditional medicines to mark 45 years of diplomatic relations.

Singh reiterated India’s support to the joint peace initiative of North Korea and South Korea and encouraged both sides to seeking peace and prosperity in the Korean Peninsula. Pyongyang’s proposed talks with the US on abandoning its nuclear weapons programme, however, looked uncertain on Wednesday with North Korean officers reportedly claiming the talks may be called off.

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