The Kremlin says that President Vladimir Putin has met with a special envoy of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

A terse statement issued by Putin's office Tuesday said the president met Choe Ryong Hae, a senior official in the ruling Workers' Party. The Kremlin said Choe has delivered a letter from Kim, but wouldn't give further details.

Russia's Foreign Ministry had said earlier that Moscow hoped to discuss trade and economic ties, the situation on the Korean Peninsula and in Northeast Asia, and other international issues. Choe will also visit Khabarovsk and Vladivostok in far eastern Russia.

Choe, one of Kim's close associates, visited Beijing last year as a special envoy and was part of a North Korean delegation that visited South Korea in October during the Asian Games.