Advertisement
Wednesday, Oct 27, 2021
Outlook.com
Outlook.com

Kim Jong Un Wants To Strengthen North Korea's Ties With China Amid Pandemic

After claiming for months that it had entirely eradicated the coronavirus, North Korea came dangerously close to conceding on Wednesday, June 30, that its anti-virus campaign had been less than ideal.

Kim Jong Un Wants To Strengthen North Korea's Ties With China Amid Pandemic
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un talks during a Workers' Party meeting in Pyongyang, North Korea, in this June 18, 2021, file photo supplied by the North Korean government. | (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP, File)
Kim Jong Un Wants To Strengthen North Korea's Ties With China Amid Pandemic
outlookindia.com
2021-07-01T15:38:09+05:30

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said Thursday he''ll push to further upgrade relations with China, his main ally, as he struggles to navigate his country out of a deepening crisis linked to the pandemic.

Kim made the comments in a message to Chinese President Xi Jinping congratulating him on the 100th founding anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party, according to the official Korean Central News Agency.

“The Workers'' Party of Korea, by its firm unity with the Chinese Communist Party, would raise (North Korea)-China friendship to a new strategic point as required by the times and as desired by the peoples of the two countries,” Kim was quoted as saying.

In an apparent reference to the United States, Kim said that “hostile forces'' vicious slander and all-round pressure upon the Chinese Communist Party are no more than a last-ditch attempt and they can never check the ongoing advance of the Chinese people,” according to KCNA.

Kim's message came a day after he told a powerful Politburo meeting that a “crucial” lapse in the anti-virus campaign has caused a “great crisis.”

He did not elaborate, but there was speculation that Kim may have aimed to raise a call for international assistance, including vaccine shipments.

North Korea maintains some of the world's toughest anti-virus measures, including 1 ½ years of border shutdowns, despite its much questionable claim to be coronavirus-free.

Such draconian steps have devastated its already struggling economy, and Kim has said before his country faces the “worst-ever” situation. It's unclear when North Korea would reopen its borders with China, and so far, there are no reports that it has received any vaccines.

More than 90 percent of North Korea''s trade goes through China, which has long been suspected of refusing to fully implement UN sanctions against North Korea because of its nuclear weapons programs. Experts say China worries about a collapse and chaos in North Korea because it doesn't want refugees flooding over the long border and a pro-US, unified Korea on its doorstep.

On Wednesday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin held out the possibility of sending assistance to North Korea.

“China and the DPRK have a long tradition of helping each other when they encounter difficulties,” Wang said, referring to the North by the initials of its official name. “If necessary, China will actively consider providing assistance to the DPRK.”

Advertisement

Outlook Newsletters

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Read More from Outlook

Bombay High Court Adjourns Aryan Khan's Bail Application Till Tomorrow

Bombay High Court Adjourns Aryan Khan's Bail Application Till Tomorrow

Former Attorney General of India (AGI) Mukul Rohatgi appeared for Shah Rukh Khan’s son Aryan Khan, along with his existing legal counsel comprising Satish Manishinde and Amit Desai.

Explainer | Why A Lawyer Is Seeking FIR Against NCB's Wankhede For 'Extortion' In Aryan Khan Drugs Case

Explainer | Why A Lawyer Is Seeking FIR Against NCB's Wankhede For 'Extortion' In Aryan Khan Drugs Case

On Monday, a lawyer approached the Mumbai police with a complaint seeking registration of an FIR against Sameer Wankhede and five others for extortion in the drugs-on-cruise case.

IPL Controversy: CVC Capital Under BCCI Scanner

IPL Controversy: CVC Capital Under BCCI Scanner

The BCCI on Monday named RPSG Ventures Limited and Irelia Company Pte Ltd. (CVC Capital Partners) as owners of the new IPL teams from 2022.

'TMC & AAP On A Mission To Split Congress Votes And Help BJP In Goa': State Congress Chief

'TMC & AAP On A Mission To Split Congress Votes And Help BJP In Goa': State Congress Chief

Goa Congress president Girish Chodankar strongly asserted that the voters cannot be wooed with false promises and money as people are deeply rooted in the Congress.

Advertisement