North Korea-Russia Summit Intended To Send A Signal To U.S. North Korea's Kim Jong Un calls the two-hour summit with Russia's Vladimir Putin "meaningful." But they did not appear to make progress on the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.
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North Korea-Russia Summit Intended To Send A Signal To U.S.

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North Korea-Russia Summit Intended To Send A Signal To U.S.

North Korea-Russia Summit Intended To Send A Signal To U.S.

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ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Meanwhile, Kim Jong Un met today with Russian President Vladimir Putin. They held a summit in the Russian port city of Vladivostok, where Kim has received a warm welcome. As NPR's Lucian Kim reports, this meeting is intended to send a signal to a third country, the United States.

LUCIAN KIM, BYLINE: An armored train carrying Kim Jong Un pulled into Vladivostok station on Wednesday.

(SOUNDBITE OF MILITARY BAND MUSIC)

L. KIM: A military band played the North Korean national anthem. For Kim, the trip is a way to show he has a powerful friend besides China. For Russia's President Vladimir Putin, the visit is a reminder to Washington of Moscow's diplomatic levers.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

PRESIDENT VLADIMIR PUTIN: (Speaking Russian).

L. KIM: At the start of today's summit, Putin welcomed Kim, saying Russia supports an easing of tensions on the Korean Peninsula. The two leaders spent two hours, twice the allotted time, in face-to-face talks which were followed by a gala reception.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

SUPREME LEADER KIM JONG UN: (Speaking Korean).

L. KIM: Kim raised a toast and wished his host good health.

(SOUNDBITE OF GLASSES CLINKING)

L. KIM: After escorting Kim back to his limousine, Putin spoke to reporters.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

PUTIN: (Speaking Russian).

L. KIM: Putin said lowering the nuclear threat is a common priority for both Russia and the U.S. and added that Kim supports that view as long as his security is guaranteed.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

PUTIN: (Speaking Russian).

L. KIM: He said he has no secrets or conspiracies with Kim Jong Un and that he'd report back to the U.S. and China about his talks. Putin will get a chance to do that soon enough, as he has flown onto Beijing for an international gathering. Kim will stay in Vladivostok, where he's expected to do some sightseeing before returning to Pyongyang. Lucian Kim, NPR News, Moscow.

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