North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un arrived in his armored train in Vladivostok on Wednesday, a day before he is due to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin in the eastern Russian port city.
Kim was met by Russian officials including Russia’s ambassador in Pyongyang, Alexander Matsegora. He walked the red carpet laid out for him from the platform to the waiting limousines, with a military orchestra playing the anthem of North Korea and then the one of Russia, according to a video shared by Russia’s Tass news agency.
Kim then headed to Vladivostok’s Russky Island where the summit is set to take place. His car was accompanied by a group of bodyguards until he left the area.
Upon crossing the Russian border hours earlier, Kim told Russian officials he was “pleased to be on Russian soil.”
“I have heard so much good things about your country and I have dreamt about spending time here for a long time,” he told Russian officials as he arrived hours earlier at Hasan station near the North Korean border, according to a local Russian government statement.
The visit — Kim’s first to Russia and his first meeting with Vladimir Putin — comes amid an impasse in nuclear talks with the United States. The much-anticipated summit between the North Korean leader and US President Donald Trump in Hanoi broke down in February.
Kim Jong Un became the leader of North Korea in 2011, after succeeding his late father, Kim Jong Il.