VK Singh becomes the first Indian minister to visit North Korea in 20 years. Both countries decide to explore possibilities of cooperation in areas of mutual interest including agriculture, pharmaceuticals, promotion of Yoga and traditional medicines and agree to strengthen people to people contacts through educational and cultural exchange
VK Singh with North Korean officials
Minister of State for External Affairs General VK Singh visited North Korea on May 15-16 and held talks with his North Korean counterpart and other top-level leaders . According to the Ministry of External Affiars, this is the first Ministerial-level visit from India to DPRK after a gap of almost 20 years. India and DPRK established formal diplomatic relations on 10 December 1973 and this year marks the 45th year of establishment of diplomatic relations.
During two day official visit, at the invitation of the North Korean Government, General Singh held discussions with Kim Yong Dae, Vice President of the Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly, Ri Yong Ho, Foreign Minister, Pak Chun Nam, Minister of Culture and Choe Hui Chol, Vice Foreign Minister of DPRK on a range of issues covering political, regional, economic, educational and cultural cooperation between the two countries.
"The DPRK (Democratic People"s Republic of Korea) side provided an overview of some of the recent developments in the Korean Peninsula. MOS reiterated India’s support to the joint peace initiative of DPRK and Republic of Korea (ROK) leadership, encouraging both sides for their efforts towards the establishment of peace and prosperity on the Korean Peninsula. MOS highlighted the threat from nuclear proliferation, in particular India’s concerns in the context of the proliferation linkages with India’s neighbourhood. The DPRK side emphasized that as a friendly country DPRK will never allow any action that would create concerns for India’s security," the foreign ministry said in a statement.
The two sides decided to explore possibilities of cooperation in areas of mutual interest including vocational education, agriculture, pharmaceuticals, promotion of Yoga and traditional medicines. Both sides agreed to strengthen people to people contacts through an educational and cultural exchange, to mark 45 years of establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries.