Russian President Putin arrives in North Korea for 1st official visit in 24 years

Russian President Vladimir Putin landed in North Korea's capital Pyongyang on Tuesday for his first visit to the nation in 24 years, the Kremlin said.

The Russian president was invited by North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, who "personally met Vladimir Putin at the airport in Pyongyang," the Kremlin said in a statement.

After exchanging greetings, the two leaders departed from the airport in the same car, it added.

Yury Ushakov, an aide to Putin, had told reporters Monday that the visit would last two days, with the main events taking place on the second day.

An official welcoming ceremony followed by talks are expected to take place at Kim's residence later on Wednesday, according to Ushakov.

Talks are to be held in two rounds — in both limited and extended formats — with the two leaders to address the most significant and sensitive issues in a special informal conversation while walking around Kim's residence.

Russia and North Korea plan to sign several documents after the talks, with a joint statement expected from Putin and Kim, said Ushakov.

Ceremonial events are also to take place, including a visit to a monument dedicated to soldiers of the Red Army who died while fighting Japanese forces in Korea during World War II, along with a concert.

Putin and Kim are to travel together back to the airport after a formal state reception with speeches exchanged by both leaders.

On the way, they will stop by the only Orthodox church in North Korea, the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity.

The last time Putin visited North Korea was in 2000, when the country was still under the leadership of Kim Jong Il, father of current leader Kim Jong Un.

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