PYONGYANG, North Korea – Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov arrived in North Korea on Thursday for talks with senior officials.
Lavrov's visit comes ahead of a planned summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and was seen as an attempt by Moscow to ensure its voice is heard in the North's diplomatic overtures with Washington, Seoul and Beijing.
After his arrival, Lavrov met with North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho.
Russia's Foreign Ministry said in a statement earlier they would discuss bilateral issues as well as the overall situation on the Korean Peninsula. Details of Lavrov's schedule in Pyongyang were not disclosed.
Despite having a border with the North and relatively cordial relations that President Vladimir Putin has seemed to want to develop further, Russia has so far remained largely on the sidelines as Kim has emerged onto the world stage this year.
Kim has already met twice with China's President Xi Jinping and South Korean President Moon Jae-in. One of Kim's top lieutenants, former intelligence chief Kim Yong Chol, is now in New York to discuss with U.S. officials the agenda for the summit planned in Singapore on or around June 12.